Houston police cruisers now remind texting drivers ‘It Can Wait'

HOUSTON – Houston police and AT&T on Tuesday kicked off the next phase of the “It Can Wait” campaign.

The joint venture is aimed at educating people about the dangers of texting while driving, by reminding drivers that a text message or phone call can wait until after their vehicle is stopped.

“It takes your eyes off the road, your hands off the steering wheel and it takes your focus away from driving,” Houston police Assistant Chief Wendy Baimbridge said. “It’s akin to intoxicated drivers.”

In September, Texas joined most other states by banning texting while driving. To spread the word, 16 Houston police cruisers now have the “It Can Wait” message on the back glass.

Drivers who break the law face a $99 fine for the first offense and a penalty of up to $200 for subsequent offenses. Houston police said that 6,900 citations for driver inattention have been issued at the scene of crashes in 2017.

“Accidents related to texting and driving is the leading cause of death amongst teens,” Baimbridge said.

Baimbridge encouraged drivers, especially teens, to turn off their mobile device and put it out of arm's reach before starting their car.

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