Illinois Officials Remind Motorists Not to Drive Impaired, Distracted and to Move Over For Emergency Vehicles

By Benjamin Cox on December 23, 2019 at 7:11pm

The holiday season is one of the deadliest for motorists in the State of Illinois. According to numbers from the Illinois Department of Transportation, 5 of 13 driving fatalities last year in the state were due to impaired driving over Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. 1 of 5 fatalities from New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day last year was also due to impaired driving.

Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White issued a warning to motorists that driving high on cannabis after January 1st is still a DUI charge. White suggested that those who drink or consume cannabis during holiday celebrations this year to use ride sharing programs, public transportation, cabs, or designate a sober driver. Many bars and taverns in the Jacksonville area will often provide a free ride home or pay for a ride for those who are not legally able to drive.

White also recently thanked Mothers Against Drunk Driving for awarding the state a 4.5 star rating for the government’s efforts to combat impaired driving in the state.

Illinois State Police also want to remind motorists that violators of Scott’s Law and driving will distracted fines go up on January 1st. Illinois State Police Trooper Mindy Carroll says its been a tough year to be an emergency responder in the state: “We’ve had 27 stationary ISP squad cars hit while they were on the side of the road assisting motorists. Troopers and citizens have sustained injuries. We’ve lost 2 troopers this year. I think many motorists are actually doing what they are supposed to be doing. I still think there are some people who don’t know, though. I mean if we are still continuing to write these citations, obviously there are people that still don’t do it, don’t know about it, or just don’t care.” Illinois State Police have written nearly 6300 Scott’s Law tickets this year.

The fine for Scott’s Law doubles and increases for each subsequent ticket. A person may also have their license suspended if it results in property damage or a personal injury. Drivers are reminded to not drive drunk, high, or distracted to avoid any further tragedies on the state’s highways this year. Current Illinois motor vehicle fatalities are at 965, which is 53 fewer than a year ago, according to statistics released today by IDOT.