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  Illinois State Police News Release   

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New Traffic Statutes Effective January 1, 2004

Press Release Date: December 15, 2003    || Archived April 1, 2004
SPRINGFIELD IL - The Illinois State Police (ISP) reminds motorists of four traffic law changes that will go into effect on January 1, 2004. ISP Director Larry Trent said, "Each day, motor vehicle crashes result in property damage, injury, or death. The new traffic laws signed by Governor Blagojevich, will help support efforts by the state police to protect children and new teen drivers, and ensure safe travel on interstates throughout Illinois."

The new laws are:

Booster Seat Law - Provides that whenever a person is transporting a child under age eight, the person is responsible for properly securing the child in an appropriate child restraint system, which includes a booster seat. Every person, when transporting a child between the ages 8 and 16, is responsible for properly securing that child in a safety belt. If the vehicle used to transport children under eight years of age is equipped with lap belts only in the back seat and the child weighs more than 40 pounds, the child may be transported in the back seat wearing a lap belt only. If a combination lap and shoulder belt is available, the child must be secured in a booster seat.

New Teen Drivers - Any person under the age of 18 who receives a graduated driver’s license, for the first six months of the license or until the person reaches the age of 18, whichever occurs sooner, the person may not drive with more than one person in the vehicle who is under the age of 20 unless they are siblings, children, step-siblings, or stepchildren of the driver.

Left Lane Law - While traveling on an interstate highway, a vehicle may not be driven in the left lane, except when overtaking and passing another vehicle. This prohibition does not apply to authorized emergency vehicles while engaged in official duties.

Aggravated Fleeing and Eluding - Any person commits aggravated fleeing or attempting to elude a peace officer if he or she disobeys two or more official traffic control devices in the course of fleeing or attempting to elude a peace officer.

"According to recent National Highway Traffic Safety Administration statistics, traffic crashes kill more people under age 34 each year then all other crimes combined. Enforcement of the new laws by Troopers will give the Illinois State Police an opportunity to reduce these alarming statistics," Trent concluded.

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