Houston Matters

Could a Texting and Driving Ban Pass this Legislative Session?

The start of the next legislative session in Austin is still a couple of months away, but state lawmakers are already beginning to file bills. Among them: State Representative Tom Craddick, who has once again filed a measure calling for a texting-while-driving ban. It’s similar to a bill passed in 2011, which Gov. Perry vetoed. […]

The start of the next legislative session in Austin is still a couple of months away, but state lawmakers are already beginning to file bills. Among them: State Representative Tom Craddick, who has once again filed a measure calling for a texting-while-driving ban. It’s similar to a bill passed in 2011, which Gov. Perry vetoed.

In the new year, with a new Governor and Lieutenant Governor, might there be new thinking about this old debate? Could we see a texting-while-driving ban passed again, and this time signed into law?

We discuss the potential for such a bill to pass through the legislature, and be received more favorably by our governor-to-be.

Then: drivers aren’t just texting behind the wheel, they’re also making phone calls, using GPS to find their way around, checking out posts on social media, e-mailing, searching for restaurants, playing podcasts and playing music. It’s become habit for many of us, but a distracting and potentially dangerous one.

We discuss why Houston’s drivers have a hard time unplugging behind the wheel. And we examine technology’s role, from products that make it easier for motorists to drive hands-free, to technology that prohibits or limits a driver’s ability to use a phone.

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Michael Hagerty

Michael Hagerty

Senior Producer, Houston Matters

Michael Hagerty is the senior producer for Houston Matters. He's spent more than 20 years in public radio and television and dabbled in minor league baseball, spending four seasons as the public address announcer for the Reno Aces, the Triple-A affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks.

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