Effective September 1, 2017, Texas will enact a law that limits the use of cell phones to send, read or reply to text messages while driving except for emergencies or if you are using these features through a hands-free device.
What is allowed and not allowed with the new law?
✔ The use of wireless phone apps such as GPS or music apps
✔ Phone calls while driving with the exception of school zones, bus drivers and new drivers
✔ Text messaging while stopped or while using hands-free devices
✘ Not Allowed
✘ Reading, sending or replying to a text messaging while the vehicle is moving
✘ The use of wireless communication devices by bus drivers and new drivers
✘ Phone calls or texting while in school zones
$25-99 Standard Traffic Fine for 1st Offense
$100-200 fine for 2nd Offense
Insurance companies will be notified
What are the exceptions?
Some exceptions include contacting emergency services, reporting illegal activity or reading a text message “reasonably believed concerning an emergency.” You may also send text messages while driving if you have a hands-free device that only requires you to briefly “activate or deactivate a function of the wireless communication or hands-free device.”
How We Can Help
Car Toys carries a wide selection of products that can assist with being a safer driver by allowing you to keep your eyes on the road more often and helping you to comply with the increasing number of distracted driving laws across the country. From Navigation receivers with CarPlay built in, to Cell Phone Mounts and Bluetooth car kits, Car Toys has solutions in every price range that can assist in not only avoiding a ticket but also hopefully making your commute much safer.
The universal cell phone mount will give you the ability to activate a function of your device and use whatever features are allowed by law, which if you are in Washington State is very limited. This is a good option for people who would like to follow the phone's built-in GPS or activate other essential device features.
A Bluetooth hands-free car kit is an excellent choice for connecting your wireless device to your factory stereo. This will allow you to make and receive phone calls, and in many cases streaming audio for music. Be careful though; some of these Bluetooth units may require that you control these features through your phone.
Depending on your particular needs Apple CarPlay or Android Auto aftermarket receivers might be the best option for you. If you are looking to add a mix of great features and safety, you should consider one of these units. CarPlay-enabled receivers, through Siri, allow you to control many of the features of your Apple iPhone such as music, maps, messaging, and phone calls. Similarly, Android Auto has a very robust voice-command feature powered by Google. Just say “OK Google” or press and hold the voice command button on your steering wheel, or touch-screen interface to activate voice commands. Just like CarPlay-enabled receivers you can make and receive phone calls, access your messages, get turn-by-turn directions, and much more!