Kids of the digital age will have to stop texting when they are driving to meet their BFFs – if they want to text while on the road, they may have to take the bus

Legislation proposed by Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White to strengthen the laws on distracted driving was signed into law on Aug. 7 by Governor Pat Quinn and will become effective on Jan. 1, 2010.  The measures ban text messaging while driving and cell phone use while driving in school or construction zones.

The penalty for violating either of these measures results in a moving violation that will go on the motorist’s driving record as well as accompanying fines and court costs to be determined by the judge.

The legislation is based on recommendations made by the state’s Distracted Driving Task Force, chaired by Secretary White. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that at least 25 percent of police-reported crashes involve some form of driver inattention.

A recent Traffic Guy column alluded to a study that showed kids send or receive an average of 80 texts per day. Another study said a participant admitted he sometimes would look up and, like, see a car and swerve out of the way before he resumed texting. LOL. (TG is unsure whether that indicates “laughing out loud” or “lots of luck.”)