Lawmakers in Texas have enacted a new law that prohibits texting and driving throughout the entire state.
Texas House Bill 62 went into full effect at the beginning of the month. The law makes it illegal for people to read, write or send electronic messages while they are driving.
Drivers may still use the internet for navigation or music programs. In the event of an emergency a driver may use electronic messaging for communication purposes once the vehicle is stopped.
TxDOT reports that over 100,000 traffic crashes occurred last year as a result of distracted driving. The government agency reports that 455 deaths have also occurred.
Drivers who are caught violating the law for the first time can face a fine up to $99. Repeat offenders face a fine of up to $200 per offense.
Texas is one of the last states in the country that has adopted texting and driving laws.