Texting while driving on Illinois roads is illegal and deadly.
To raise awareness of the dangers of texting while driving and to reduce the number of cell-phone related accidents on Illinois roadways, agencies statewide are partnering to remind motorists to "Drive Now. Text Later."
Did You Know?
An estimated 24 percent of all traffic crashes – about 1.2 million per year – are linked to motorists texting or talking on cell phones. (National Safety Council)
Spread the Message
Remind yourself and others to stop texting while driving. Help save lives by spreading the word.
Download and print marketing materials to post in locations such as your employee lounge, classroom, cafeteria, elevator and other gathering places.
Download video or radio Public Service Announcements (PSA):
- Video PSA (15 sec.)
- Bus Driver Radio PSA (30 sec.)
- Pilot Radio PSA (30 sec.)
- Surgeon Radio PSA (30 sec.)
Additional marketing resources:
- Request a free window decal for your vehicle
- Share the "Drive Now. Text Later." message on Facebook
- Include an article in your newsletter
- Send a letter to the newspaper
Seen Around Town
| 2012 Map Cover Art Contest Winner |
Distracted Driving Category
Dominika Rog, Elmwood Park High School
In addition to our partners, the "Drive Now. Text Later." message has the support of people from all walks of life. The message has been spread in a variety of ways from window decals displayed in cars to the "Drive Now. Text Later." logo being posted on social media sites to condo associations printing information in their newsletters. The campaign also has gained support from dozens of municipalities, local police departments, high schools, colleges and businesses.
In the Media:
- Chicago Tribune
- Chicago Tribune Editorial
- ABC 7, WLS-TV Chicago and KABC-TV Los Angeles
- NBC 13, WREX-TV Rockford
- Ars Technica: The Art of Technology
- Kane County Chronicle
- Downers Grove News and Announcements
- The Beacon News
- "Drive Now. Text Later." Tweet
- Hands Free Info
About the Campaign:
The "Drive Now. Text Later." campaign was born out of a partnership between organizations that share a collective commitment to continuously and effectively improve traffic safety in Illinois.
January 1, 2011, marked the first anniversary of the state law that bans texting while driving.
However, an online survey by the Illinois Tollway indicated that 40 percent of Tollway customers did not know that it is illegal to text or email at any time while driving on Illinois roads.
The campaign includes the placement of posters on toll booths, in retail outlets, rest stops, oases and driver's license facilities; radio and television public service announcements; bumper stickers and window clings; signage on roadway message boards; newsletter articles and other tools to help educate Illinois residents about the dangers of texting while driving.
Get the Facts
The statistics on distracted driving are alarming:
- Texting while driving increases the likelihood of a crash by 23 times during the period that a driver is sending a text. That translates to a 2,200 percent increase. (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA))
- Drivers who use hand-held devices are four times as likely to get into crashes serious enough to injure themselves. (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety)
- There is one accident every 24 seconds attributed to distracted driving with a cell phone. (National Safety Council)
- Distracted driving takes your eyes off the road for approximately 4.6 seconds. If driving at 55 mph, that translates to driving the distance of one football field blindfolded. (Virginia Tech Transportation Institute)
- 80 percent of all crashes, 65 percent of near crashes and 16 percent of highway deaths involve some type of distraction. (Virginia Tech 100-Car Naturalistic Study for NHTSA)
- The worst offenders are the youngest and least-experienced drivers: men and women under 20 years of age. (NHTSA)
Tips to Avoid Distracted Driving
- Put your cell phone out of sight and out of reach when you get in the car.
- Display a "Drive Now. Text Later." window decal and remind yourself and others to stop texting while driving. Order your free window decal.
- Pull over to a safe location to use a cell phone.
- If you must answer the phone, use a hands-free device.
- Do not send or read text messages while driving.
- Blackberry users: When in the car, set up a "driving" profile on your smart phone, to silence alerts and the phone.
- To listen to the radio, use the volume and station buttons on the steering wheel, instead of reaching for the center console.
Before you get on the road:
- Load compact discs in the player.
- Set up a pre-selected playlist on an mp3 player.
- Enter an address in the navigation system.
If you must text — visit a Tollway oasis
Tollway customers who need to send or receive text messages and emails should stop at one of seven oases located along the system. The free Wi-Fi service allows drivers to complete texting and access the Internet so they can focus their full attention on driving when they get back on the road.
Other Resources and More Information
- AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety
- AAA Distracted Driving FAQs
- National Safety Council - Distracted Driving Program
- Distraction.Gov - Statistics and Facts about Distracted Driving - Official government site on distracted driving launched by the US Department of Transportation
- National Highway Traffic Safety Administration - Vehicle Safety Research - NHTSA drowsy and distracted driving research
- Pew Internet and American Life Project (Pew Research Center) - Teens and Distracted Driving Statistics
- Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration - Study showing truckers that text and drive have an accident odds ratio of 23 percent.
- Governors Highway Safety Association - Cell phone driving laws for each state