The subject of texting and driving has been a new and heated topic that has come up in every state ballot for the past few years. As more people are dying every day due to distracted driving, action had to be taken to prevent further accidents and loss of life.
While the law defines texting and driving to be illegal in Texas, there is more to the story than just a simple yes answer. We will look at how the law is defining what you can do behind the wheel and some other factors that will influence how you drive.
In 2017, the entire state of Texas put a law into effect that banned the use of wireless communication devices when driving for the purposes of texting or email. What this means is that when you are operating any motor vehicle, it is strictly forbidden that you use your phone for texting or emails.
This means that you can’t pick up your phone and use it to check a quick email or send a text without facing legal consequences. Additionally, any driver who is using a learner permit or is under the age of 18 is not allowed to use a phone in any way when operating a vehicle.
If you are using a hands-free device to receive a phone call, then that is allowed as long as you are not required to use your phone to do so. Cars with modern Bluetooth technology that allow hands-free calling is legal as long as they are used responsibly by adults.
Why the law is Important
While you should always be following all road laws, this one is especially important to the safety of yourselves and others. Recent studies have found that 1 in 4 accidents is caused by distracted driving. This is a staggering number of crashes and needed to be dealt with by taking legal action. When you take your eyes off the road for just a split second to send a text, you put yourself and everyone else at risk of causing an accident.
Any driving safety course Texas will give you the best ways to reduce distraction when driving and ensure that you are not the cause of a distracted driving accident. Even with so many new aids and devices trying to reduce distracted driving accidents, it is up to every driver to know the law and keep others safe by waiting until you are stopped to use your phone. Don’t be like those who go against the law and still use their phones unless you want to be added to the growing list of distracted driving fatalities.
Consequences of breaking it
The law is serious about protecting safe citizens and will bite you if you go against it. Distracted driving can have different consequences on different people, but you can be assured there will always be consequences. Every district has it’s own ways of dealing with misuse of the law and some areas will fine you for using any electronics when driving.
Many state fines can start under $50 dollars and go up to $200 if you rack up multiple offenses. The smaller fines may not seem too bad, but they will go on your record and can come back to haunt you. If you get in an accident while texting, there are much more serious fines and prison may be a consequence. You are also likely to have to take a defensive driving TX course to get your license back to drive again.