By JOHN GREGORY Illinois Radio Network

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (IRN) – With the New Year comes Illinois’ new ban on using hand-held electronic devices behind the wheel.

Lt. David Byrd of the Illinois State Police says as soon as the law goes into effect on Jan. 1, officers will be handing out tickets to drivers who are using their phones.

“We don’t have a grace period,” Byrd said.

The first offense will result in a $75 ticket. Byrd acknowledges that the new law should make it easier to catch other violations, such as drivers who text while driving. “The excuses won’t fly as much as they used to,” Byrd said. “Some of the excuses we used to hear is ‘Oh, I was making a phone call.’”

Drivers can still make calls if they have a hands-free device.

© Copyright 2013 Illinois Radio Network. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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