Local law enforcement participating in Distracted Driving Awareness Week


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UIPD and the Champaign Police Department is teaming up for the Illinois Distracted Driving Awareness Week, which is taking place until April 28.

The first-ever Illinois Distracted Driving Awareness Week is underway until Friday. This year, University and Champaign police are joining forces to emphasize the dangers of distracted driving.

In an effort to highlight the importance of safe driving, local law enforcement will be conducting city and campus wide traffic details.

Almost 3500 people were killed in 2015 from accidents involving distracted driving, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

“It’s no secret that distracted driving is an issue in our country as cellphones and smartphones become more and more prevalent,” said Patrick Wade, spokesman for University Police. “People are getting hurt and it has become more and more of a problem, so we thought it’s important to do something, especially here in Champaign-Urbana where we have such an interesting mix of bicyclists, pedestrians and vehicles.”

To reach their objective and reiterate the importance of safe driving, law enforcement will be distributing written warnings and citations to motorists.

Our officers are always looking out for distracted driving, but sometimes there are higher priority calls, busy with something else.” Wade said. “So this week we are going to be extra watchful for that.”

The Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, American Automobile Association, Illinois State Police and almost 300 local agencies participated in launching this awareness week.

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