In comparison with some other states, Texas is somewhat late to the game when it comes to the illegality of texting while driving. A bill recently signed into law by Gov. Greg Abbott will help the state catch up, however.
The law, which goes into effect on September 1, 2017, bans the use of handheld devices for reading, writing, or sending electronic messages while driving. Violators will face a fine of $25-$99 for their first offense, and up to $200 for additional offenses.
If you’ve had an accident because of another driver’s distracted texting, be sure to contact a car accident lawyer Dallas, TX to be advised of your rights, as well as the best way to proceed with a lawsuit.
Texting while behind the wheel in TX is dangerous, but so are many other activities that Texans and others indulge in while they’re on the road. Here are some that aren’t yet illegal, but that you want to avoid.
Common Causes of Distracted Driving
So you’re smart enough not to text your friend while driving and decide to give them a call, instead. That’s still a bad idea. Unless you’re a passenger, avoid using a phone in the car. Turns out it’s not only the actual handling of the device that causes distraction, but the very act of talking, as well. Even using a hands-free device can be enough to take your mind off the task at hand.
Eating In the Car
Once in a while, it’s necessary to grab a burger, taco, or even a salad from a drive-thru restaurant. However, take care with eating your meal as you drive — or better yet, pull into the parking lot or wait until you reach your destination to dig in. Juggling a hot beverage, spilling a sauce, or reaching into the bag for a handful of fries can be dangerous to your health, and not only because you’re consuming junk food. Anything that causes you to look away from the road can lead to an accident.
Kids and Dogs
If you’re the parent of a child or a furbaby, it’s unavoidable that sometimes you’ll have to take your kids and pets with you in the car. However, both can be a major distraction. Minimize the dangers by setting some ground rules for car behavior.
Teach your children not to interrupt you when you’re driving, and ensure they aren’t squabbling with their siblings in the backseat. If necessary, give them the distraction of an iPad or your smartphone to play on. The same goes for pets. Don’t reward whining or overexcited dog behavior in the car. Give your canine friend a bone or other toy to keep them occupied during the trip.
Putting on Makeup
If you don’t wear makeup, it might surprise you to learn how many people apply the stuff while they’re on the road. If you do wear makeup, either apply it before you leave or once you get to your destination. No “smoky eye” is worth getting into an accident over.
Have you been involved in an accident because of these distractions? Tell us in the comments.
Judy lees is a super-connector with AYC Web Solutions who helps businesses find their audience online through outreach, partnerships, and networking. She frequently writes about the latest advancements in digital marketing and focuses her efforts on developing customized blogger outreach plans depending on the industry and competition.