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Monday, July 19, 2010

Distracted Driving Laws for the State of Texas

Distracted driving seems like an easy problem to solve when you hear it, but you wonder, why is it still such a persistent problem? In Texas, to remedy distracted driving, several laws have been approved to counter this.

Two new laws have been enacted: one that bans teens from using mobile phones and text messaging devices and the other one prohibiting the use of cellphones in school zones.

In Texas, here are the current list of prohibitions:

  • Learner's permit holders and drivers under 18 are not allowed to use cell phones while driving. This includes stops.

  • School bus operators are not allowed to use cell phones while driving.

  • School crossing zones are "No Phone Zones."

  • Dallas, Austin, Galveston, El Paso, Missouri City and Stephenville have all enacted these distracted driving laws with minor variations.

Fines for breaking the prohibitions may be from $200 to $500 or more.

In Missouri City, the first of June marked the start of the distracted driving ban. The city has even posted traffic signs that state, "No Texts, Emails or Apps While Driving." In El Paso, the ban has been in effect since the first of May. Though texting/cell phone use while driving is prohibited, hands-free devices are still allowed to use.

Galveston has started even earlier, with the ban being in effect since the fourteenth of January. Fines go up to $500.

As of yet, Texas lawmakers are still considering to give these laws an "O.K." for Houston.

Read about other Distracted Driving Campaigns or learn about Oprah's No Phone Zone campaign!

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Posted by NSC - Traffic Safety at


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