Texting and Driving is as Dangerous as Driving Drunk


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It doesn’t seem possible but new studies suggest that texting while driving is almost as dangerous as driving drunk. In fact, a person who texts and drives is twenty-three times more likely to be in a fatal or serious car accident as a person who does not get distracted by cell phone.

It is a well-known fact that looking at your cell phone to read or compose a text or an e-mail gives up the equivalent of three car lengths of safety cushion which can be all the difference in the world. In fact it can be the difference between life and death.

While a drunk driver may lose judgment and coordination for the whole time they’re behind the wheel, someone looking at the text just gives up command of the roadway for a few seconds. Unfortunately that’s all that it takes sometimes.

I’ve long advocated for a national standard for distractions my cell phone and for cell phone use, but with state laws the solution needs to be on a state-by-state basis. Many organizations have proffered a national uniform distracted driving act or statute however many states such as Texas refused to embrace the safety law.

Texas, in fact passed a bill banning texting while driving by anyone driving a motor vehicle but the bill never became law because our governor refused to sign it into law–in effect vetoing the matter. While there is a valid argument to be made for personal freedoms, the first and foremost role of government is protection of its citizens. In that regard, the refusal to implement this much-needed safety regulation has made Texas families less safe as a result.

If you’re driving on the roadway and talking on a cell phone or using your phone to text someone and you received an expensive traffic ticket as a result you may think twice about doing it again. There are many cities within Texas that have outlawed cell phone use in texting but it is a piecemeal approach and largely ineffective outside the immediate citizens.

As a personal injury lawyer in Houston I see the results of distracted driving on a daily basis and there is no doubt in my mind that we need a uniform consistent law for all of Texas.

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