HOW IT WORKS: Distracted driving still an issue in Texas


Although state law prohibits texting while driving, according to the Texas Department of Transportation 1-in-5 traffic accidents in the state involve distracted driving.

In effect since 2017, the law may contribute to the 6% decrease in crashes involving distracted driving in the past two years, according to TxDOT.

TxDOT has two campaigns—“Head’s Up, Texas” and the #EndTheStreakTX initiative—to help educate Texas drivers about the law and remind them of the dangers of distracted driving began this summer. The goal is to eliminate deadly accidents on Texas highways.

There has been at least one traffic-related death in Texas every day since Nov. 8, 2000. The campaigns asks all Texans to commit to driving safely to help end the streak.

“Our message is no longer just a public safety suggestion to urge Texans to avoid distraction while operating a vehicle; it is to remind them of the law that now forbids such activity, TxDOT Executive Director James Bass said in release. “One life lost is one too many and distracted driving is completely preventable.”

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Joe Warner
Joe Warner is managing editor of the nine Austin-Central Texas editions of Community Impact Newspaper. He previously served as senior editor of the flagship Round Rock, Pflugerville and Hutto newspaper. He came to Central Texas from Metro Detroit, where he was editor and general manager of several daily and weekly publications. He is the former president of the Michigan Press Association and was on the MPA board of directors for nine years.
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