CHICAGO — A new Illinois law aims to teach drivers how to act if they’re stopped by a police officer.
The measure comes amid increased tension in Chicago and across the nation over how traffic stops can go terribly wrong and turn deadly in the worst cases, the Chicago Tribune (http://trib.in/2cd77Qo ) reported.
The law targets the youngest and newest drivers, mandating that all driver’s education classes include a section on what to do during a traffic stop.
The bill went quickly through the state Legislature and was signed into law by Gov. Bruce Rauner last month.
Democratic state Sen. Julie Morrison of Deerfield, who was a co-sponsor of the bill, said it’s more about common sense than innovation.
“Being pulled over by an officer is really stressful,” Morrison said. “I think it’s really important, especially in this time that we’re in, that kids and new drivers learn what is expected when they are stopped by an officer, how to respond correctly, to be respectful, and hopefully that will make the encounter as least problematic as possible. I’m hoping it protects both the officer and the driver from things escalating.”
Jim Archambeau, a Chicago Public Schools driver’s education teacher, said he’s taught the lesson in his classes for years with a visit from a police officer.
“The police officers tell the students what they like to see: ‘Hands on the wheel, window down, no sudden movements,'” he said.
Archambeau said a video that addresses the topic also would be helpful in the classroom.
Information from: Chicago Tribune, http://www.chicagotribune.com