Most police agencies Fox 44 got in touch with say they are giving out warnings on the new texting and driving law for now, but that won’t be the case for too much longer.
The texting and driving law went into effect September 1st, and in just one month the Texas Highway Patrol says they have given out more than a dozen warnings.
“We haven’t written any tickets yet, our policy is going to be a 90 day grace period, so we are giving people 90 days, now other police departments don’t have that grace period so if they want to write a citation they can,” said Sgt. D.L. Wilson. DPS.
In the bigger scheme of things, this new law may be on to something.
“It seems to be working a little bit because people haven’t noticed as many people sitting there looking at their phone,” said Sgt. Wilson.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, more than 109-thousand crashes involved distracted driving in our state in 2016.
That’s a 3% increase from 2015.
DPS troopers say a lot of times, it happens when drivers take the chance on using their phone during slow traffic.
“For police officers it’s like following a drunk driver, because they are taking their eyes off the road and they are very dangerous to the motoring public,” said Sgt. Wilson.
Now with this new law troopers will keep track if texting is specifically the cause of a wreck.
If it is, that ticket could cost you hundreds of dollars.
“Put those cell phones down and do what you need to do,” said Sgt. Wilson.
Waco and Hewitt police are on a grace period as of Friday but both agencies say that will end soon.
Woodway police say they are ready to give tickets, but so far they haven’t caught anyone violating that law.