Teen Driving Deaths Down Drastically In Illinois

According to Illinois Secretary of State, teen traffic fatalities have decreased by 74% since 2007. According to data recently released to the media, there were 41 Illinois teen traffic deaths in 2019 and 48 in 2018. This is compared to 155 in 2007.

Why are they comparing the last two years to 2007? Well, in 2008 Illinois introduced the “graduated driver license” or the GDL, which includes three phases. The first phase is the “permit phase” for 15-year olds, followed by the “initial licensing phase” for 16-17 year olds. Then comes the final “full licensing phase” for those 18-20.

Here is what Illinois Secretary of State had to say about GDLs and the improved numbers: “The goal has always been to save lives. While our graduated driver licensing (GDL) program is working as intended with teen driving deaths decreasing, there is still more work to be done. My hope is that with hard work and continued open communication between my office, teens, parents and driver education teachers, teen fatalities will continue to decline.”

I am impressed by these numbers. The main reason is that the year this law went into effect, was the same time period the I-phone was introduced, which was the same time that the distracted driving epidemic began. We have to give the Illinois legislature and the Secretary of State’s office their credit as this GDL program seems to be working as slowly prepares young people with the training, skill and confidence to drive safely. Let’s hope this trend continues.

If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in a Chicago car crash or Chicago truck accident, then call Chicago car accident attorney, Aaron J. Bryant, for a free legal consultation at 312-614-1076.

Undocumented Illinois Immigrants Can Apply For Driver’s License On November 12

I wrote earlier this year that
Illinois Governor Quinn signed a new law that would allow undocumented
immigrants to apply for a temporary driver’s license that would allow them to
drive legally in the United States. As the Chicago Sun-Times reported
earlier this month, on November 12, the day has finally come for these
immigrants to apply for the license through the secretary of state’s

At their appointments (with
the Secretary of State’s office), applicants must provide documents proving
their date of birth; their written signature; their Illinois address for at
least one year, and insurance coverage. Their photo will be taken and processed
through the state’s facial recognition database, and they will take a driver’s
road test, a written test on the Illinois rules of the road, and a vision
test. Written materials will be provided in four other languages, and
translators will be available at facilities, but applicants also are encouraged
to bring friends or relatives with them to act as interpreters, Secretary of
State officials said. Once documents are verified and insurance is proven,
applicants will receive a driver’s license in the mail.

Officials estimated the in-person appointment process should
take two hours per person. They expect to issue 100,000 licenses a year, at $30

As I have written in the past, this is a win-win for
everyone in the state of Illinois. Regular working people, who pay taxes and
are otherwise law-abiding, will be allowed to drive legally. This, I believe,
will unclog the traffic court systems for unnecessary arrests and tickets
issued to undocumented immigrants. Also, I believe that the roads will be safer
as these drivers will have to learn the rules of the road and be required to
purchase auto insurance. Hopefully this will lead to fewer car accidents or at
the very least, protect motorists who are injured in traffic accidents with
more motorists who have insurance coverage.

If you or someone you love has been injured in a Chicago car crash or Chicago truck accident, then call Chicago personal injury lawyer Aaron
Bryant for a free legal consultation at 312-588-3384. 

2012 Could Bring New Traffic Laws In Illinois

Last week, Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White held his Advisory Committee on Traffic Safety meeting in Springfield, which revealed several new laws that could be proposed in 2012. The Daily Herald reported that Secretary White discussed some interesting new laws that could be crossing the governor’s desk by the end of the year. Below are some of the proposed laws:

• Requiring helmets for motorcycle riders and passengers.

Banning drivers from using hand-held cellphones.

Tightening the penalties for misuse of disabled parking placards and licenses. 

Eliminating a loophole allowing 18-year-olds to obtain a license without any
formal driver’s ed classes.

Upping the age teens can apply for learners’ permits from 15 to 16 and
strengthening nighttime restrictions.

Cracking down on repeat offenders caught driving without insurance and driving
on a suspended license.

I think it will be impossible to pass a complete cell phone ban.  Distracted driving has become a huge epidemic in Illinois and throughout the country as it has been proven to be a major cause of car crashes in the law few years. As I have suggested before on this blog, I think one way to curb distracted driving car accidents is to stiffen the penalties against drivers who cause vehicle accidents while using their cell phones. One possibility is increasing the penalties to the same level as a drunk driving accident. It takes time for drivers to adapt to new laws (i.e. seat belt laws) before they begin to change their driving habits. If drivers know they could face stiffer penalties if they text and then cause an accident, it may persuade people to put their phones down when driving.

If you or someone you know has been injured in a Chicago car accident or Chicago truck accident, then call Chicago accident attorney, Aaron Bryant, for a free consultation at 312-588-3384 or go to the firm website at www.blgchicago.com. 

Illinois Secretary Of State And AAA Team Up To Promote Safe Driving For Teens

Illinois Secretary of State, Jesse White, was out and about this week promoting a new website that is focus on safe driving for teens. The website, which was built with partner AAA (Illinoisteendriving.com) interactive site helps parents and teens manage the complex coming-of-age process by providing users with specific information based on Illinois laws and where they are in the learning process – from preparing to drive (pre-permit) through the learner’s permit and solo driving.

“Parents and teens alike have many questions about all aspects of the learning-to-drive process,” said Brad Roeber, AAA Chicago Regional President. “AAA has partnered with Illinois‘ foremost leader on teen driving, Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White, to combine the resources of his office with AAA’s to provide a comprehensive, best-in-class tool before, during and after teens learn to drive.”

The website will provide information about Illinois‘ graduated driver licensing (GDL) system, selecting a driving school and choosing the right vehicle for their teens. Parents will also learn more about some of the common risks associated with teen drivers. Among other topics, teens can take interactive quizzes to prepare for the driving exam, learn the real costs of owning a car, and learn the Illinois laws and fines.

“I am pleased and encouraged that the number of teen crash fatalities continues to drop since my Teen Driver Safety Task Force issued recommendations that led to the strengthening of Illinois‘ graduated driver licensing (GDL) program,” said Secretary White. “Since the stronger GDL program took effect in 2008, teen driving deaths have dropped by over 50 percent. This Web site acts as a wonderful compliment to the GDL Parent-Teen Driving Guide my office developed and will further help parents and teens steer safely through the driving process for years to come.  I commend AAA Chicago for their ongoing commitment to highway safety.”

This is an excellent initiative by Secretary White and we will see if this will help contribute in the overall decrease in serious car accidents  around the state that we have seen the last few years.

If you or someone you know has been involved in a Chicago car accident  or Chicago truck accident , then call Chicago car accident attorney , Aaron Bryant, for a free consultation  at 312-588-3384 or go to the firm website at www.blgchicago.com