How much will that DUI or seat belt violation cost you? New data out in Illinois, enforcement up

Dec 22, 2010

Of course, you should never drink and drive or be in a moving car without wearing a seatbelt, but Illinois motorists will want to be especially mindful this holiday season.

Illinois State Police and local law enforcement are stepping up enforcement on impaired drivers and unbelted motorists this holiday season in what they're calling  the "You Drink and Drive, You Lose/Click It or Ticket Holiday Crackdown."

Through the end of the year, more than 200 law enforcement agencies and the Illinois State Police will put an additional $1.3  million in traffic enforcement on Illinois roadways.

Law enforcement efforts will include 100 roadside safety checks and more than 200 nighttime safety belt enforcement zones.

The increased enforcement comes on the heels of data released today showing the cost of unbuckled motorists and impaired drivers.

Richard Alan with the Illinois Department of Transportation says statistics show that failing to buckle up or driving while impaired can be costly, if not deadly.

"A safety belt citation can cost you as much as $60, but the failure to buckle up can cost you your life. A DUI conviction can cost as much as $19,000 when you add expenses such as fines, court costs, insurance fees and attorney fees," Alan said.

IDOT says hospital costs for an impaired driver involved in an accident while not wearing a seatbelt average $73,000, while drivers who were belted and alcohol-free averaged $49,000 dollars.