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As of September 1, 2017, texting while driving is illegal across the state of Texas. The City of Denton’s local ordinance bans all additional use of handheld communications devices while operating a vehicle in Denton city limits. The ordinance prohibits any additional use of hands to operate wireless communication devices, except answering or terminating a voice call on a hands-free system.
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Hands-free systems include Bluetooth, mounted or installed units, and other connected devices. A cell phone may be used to answer or terminate a call, or as a GPS unit, if the phone is mounted.
No. GPS units, including cell phones that are mounted in the vehicle, may be used while operating a vehicle; however, to set or program a GPS unit, the operator of the vehicle should find a safe place to pull over.
No. A vehicle must be out of a traffic lane in order for the driver to use a handheld device.
Yes, you may use a handheld device to report an emergency or seek emergency assistance; however, it is recommended that you find a safe place to pull over. The ordinance also excludes communications by operators of authorized emergency vehicles and by licensed operators of radio frequency devices.
The state’s law, which applies to all roadways across the state of Texas, prohibits motorists from reading, writing, or sending electronic messages while driving. Under the City’s local ordinance, all additional use of handheld devices, including voice calls, is also prohibited on roadways within the Denton city limits.
Violating the ordinance is a Class C misdemeanor; the fine may be up to $200.
No, it is not considered a moving violation.
Police will enforce violations observed in plain view. They will not seize or inspect devices to investigate a violation unless the owner grants permission or a warrant has been authorized.