Ticketed Driver Crusades Against Evanston’s Cell Phone Ban

A Highland Park resident who was ticketed for talking on a cell phone while driving says he believes the city’s signs about the ban are not enough.

After an Evanston police officer ticketed one Highland Park resident for talking on the cell while driving, he has made it his personal mission to challenge the city’s ban.

Tom Green, who was cited last month, says he believes city signage is designed more to raise money from violators than to notify drivers, and is investigating the legality of Evanston’s signs, according to a story in the Evanston Review.

Evanston’s blue cell phone ban signs are posted at major city entrances, but Green maintains they're too easy to miss and don't conform to the Secretary of State’s Rules of the Road manual.

Evanston City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz, however, told the Evanston Review that city signs meet state standards, and said the cell phone ban had been successful at reducing distracted driving.

For the full story, visit the Evanston Review.  




MMGlaser June 24, 2012 at 01:09 PM
I am so glad to hear that the police are enforcing the cellphone-while-driving ban. If the law could include hands-free devices, as well, it would be even better. The research is pretty clear that it is distinctly different from regular in-car conversations in its effect on driving safety. Little known, as well, is that there are several research studies that show that radiofrequencies emanating from the phones affect brain wave patterns. Some studies on animals have shown this radiofrequency radiation can impact spatial orientation, attention and memory. Add that to the mix. Maybe the Evanston signs should be bolder just from a safety standpoint to get people's attention. I would submit, too, that pedestrians crossing the street while on cell phones or double-earplugged into music devices are also a hazard to themselves and to drivers.
Richard Schulte June 24, 2012 at 02:38 PM
Although I believe that "the best government is the government that governs least", our experience tells us that driving while talking on a mobile phone causes accidents. A car or truck can be a lethal weapon. It's just common sense to refrain from driving (and walking) while talking on a mobile phone. Having a law prohibiting the use of a mobile phone while driving is just plain old common sense. It's difficult for me to see why anyone would object to such a law.
lucas June 24, 2012 at 03:54 PM
Not Disagreeing with the law since I decided long ago not to answer mine. If they leave message they get call back. I do agree with the signage problem. I goto he Y on Touhy at least three days a week. I take Asbury to Western and then Western to Touhy. I never noticed the Cell Phone Sign on my return trip home until I read ths artice.
Marci June 24, 2012 at 04:10 PM
Perhaps if he was not on his mobile phone, he may have been more aware of his surroundings--- including the signs. Don't waste taxpayers time fighting a law that you were clearly in the wrong violating. Just admit fault, pay the ticket, and move on. Nothing is so important, and no one is so important that they should endanger others by talking on their phone while driving anywhere-- ban or no ban.
Festus McMoron June 24, 2012 at 05:32 PM
....i'd love to meet tom green. he's probably some fat loser, who whines about everything. rules are for everybody else but him. pay the fine and get on with your life, ya loser!!
Festus McMoron June 25, 2012 at 01:16 AM
....just saw picture of tom green in evanston review. nice toupee, loser. it looks like you bought it at walmart. i always laugh when you can spot a bad toupee a mile away.
Richard Schulte June 25, 2012 at 01:28 AM
Mr. McMoron, one can disagree with someone without making rude remarks about either their looks or their weight. In the future, time may not be so kind to you and I'm sure that you wouldn't appreciate people making fun of either your looks or your weight. What goes around, usually back comes around.
Festus McMoron June 25, 2012 at 03:58 PM
....richard, guys like this need to be ridiculed. marci was right, he should just admit fault, pay the ticket, and move on. but know, he has to make a big deal about the signs and how he was wronged. this guy was probably breast feed into his teens!!
Richard Schulte June 25, 2012 at 04:23 PM
Simply because Mr. McMoron disagrees with someone, he has to ridicule the looks of the person with which he disagrees. Sounds childish to me. Now go ahead and ridicule me Mr. McMoron.
J June 26, 2012 at 03:17 PM
I agree with the cell phone ban, but I also agree that the signage informing drivers of the ban is woefully inadequate. If the real goal is safety (rather than revenue), why not increase the signage so that drivers can be better informed? Hopefully that would have an impact with those people who simply don't know the law (or their kids, who might also hold them accountable--when your kid asks "what does that sign mean," how do you tell the truth and then continue to flagrantly break the law in front of them?). As for McMoron's nasty personal comments about appearance, that sort of bullying is not only counterproductive, it is bigoted and hurtful to many other people besides the intended target.
Martin Faulkner October 31, 2013 at 08:23 PM
I know that this article is over a year old, but I had to leave a comment somewhere. I live in the suburbs and commute to Northwestern University a few times a week, always traveling the same route – Golf / Emerson Roads. I have never seen a cell phone sign on my route, as I go the same way every time. A few weeks ago, a cop pulled me over and gave me a ticket for using a cell phone while driving. I had no idea of the ban, and when I asked where the sign was (on my route), the officer indicated that they were posted at major entrances to the city, but couldn’t tell me where the one was on the road that I used. After receiving the ticket, I turn around and follow my route back into Evanston, and of course, there was no sign whatsoever. About 10 days before my court date, a sign is put up on my route, at the entrance of Evanston! I go to court, and try and explain my case that I don’t live in Evanston, that I commute on the same route and there wasn’t a sign up on Emerson Road until 10 days ago. I also explain that if I had known about the law, it wouldn’t have been an issue – I wouldn’t have used my cell phone when in Evanston. I argued that if the sign wasn’t placed on my route, that I was not properly informed and that I shouldn’t have to pay the ticket. The judge then used the analogy that there aren’t signs all over the United States stating that murder isn’t legal, but people know not to commit murder, and then found me guilty without letting me engage in a responsive debate. My jaw dropped when the judge said that; I can’t believe that is used as a defense for ticketing unaware drivers. City of Evanston, you have some serious issues to work out if your legal process justifies this city ordinance, and your police are giving out tickets as pure revenue generators when they should be doing more productive things. I’m aware of the state law that will come into effect in January, banning all hand held cell phone usage while driving, and I have no problem with that law – as an informed citizen.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something