Texas Fails to Pass Ban on Texting While Driving

A number of states across the nation are taking proactive steps to pass legislation banning texting and other distractions while driving. Over 30 states currently ban the practice, but Texas failed to do so this past legislative session.

While Texas has been unable to ban texting while driving, distracted driving has caused 5,474 deaths across the nation in 2009, including 3,089 in Texas. These numbers are continuing to escalate as drivers have more and more to distract them when they are behind the wheel.

Push to Ban Texting

The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), a nonprofit organization that represents the highway safety offices in many states, is recommending banning texting while driving. It has studied the data about distracted driving from car accidents between 2000 and 2011 and found a link between texting, cellphone use, and a higher risk of car crashes. For this reason, it recommends eliminating these situations by passing legislation that limits the use of electronic devices while driving.

When the measure came up for vote in Texas, it made it through the legislature, but stalled when Governor Rick Perry vetoed the legislation. Had it passed, this law would have banned texting for adult drivers in Texas. As it stands, adult drivers still have the right to text while driving.

The “Just Put It Down” campaign aims to draw public attention to this very real problem, even if lawmakers in Texas are not able to pass legislation to stop the dangerous activity. The campaign hopes that by drawing public attention to the danger of texting and driving, more drivers will become conscious of their actions and keep their eyes where they should be — on the road.

Once someone’s life has been taken or forever changed due to a distracted driver, nothing can make life normal again. The Just Put It Down campaign believes it is far better to be proactive and avoid the problem by setting down the phone while driving.