Another texting ban about to go into effect

May 29, 2010 5:33:48 PM PDT
Another city in our area is set to ban texting while driving in just a few days. And if you are caught doing it, you could face a big fine. Starting Tuesday, Missouri City police will start ticketing texters behind the wheel. City council passed the ordinance in February, which targets anyone texting, emailing or using 'apps' while driving, whether you're stopped or not.

"Think about this," said Captain John Bailey with the Missouri City Police Department. "How often are you sitting at a red light and it changes to green and they don't go anywhere?"

According to statistics, for every six seconds you drive, you spend more than 4 seconds doing something other than paying attention to the road.

"At least every day, I text at some point in time," said Jennifer McGowan, who admits she'll have to adjust to Missouri City's new law. "I think it's inconvenient for me, but I think it's good, because there are a lot of accidents happening. Even when I'm texting, I don't know what's going on around me."

Alex Osaw already adjusted.

"I came real close to having an accident, so it's like, nah, no more," he said.

Biker Gary Holmes supports the new law, too, saying fewer distractions make the roads safer for him.

"People already don't pay attention to bikers anyway," he said. "So if they're texting, it makes it even more dangerous for us when we ride."

Missouri City police say six major accidents between May and December of last year drove the legislation. All were caused by someone on the phone, either talking or texting.

For teen driver Stephen Pettyjohn, who says he never messages while mobile, it's more of an admission that it's too hard to do, especially when you're still new at trying to control a car.

"Teen drivers just aren't that good," he said. "We're just not."

There are couple of exceptions, which include emergencies. But you still have to pull over and safely park your car on the side of the road in order to avoid a fine.