LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - While your texting LOL" to your friends, Texas lawmakers aren't laughing. They are considering a new law banning electronic messaging while driving.
"People are engaged in this type of behavior so frequently that it has become a major safety problem," said Nacogdoches Police Chief Jim Sevey.
Experts believe it is a serious problem. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, teen driving fatalities rose 19 percent to 240 in the early part of 2012 from 202 in early 2011.
"You can't ignore this problem because then it becomes a distraction to the driver," said Sevey.
Nacogdoches decided to deter the distraction in 2011 by banning electronic messaging, a law that chief Sevey says is necessary just as many changes before it were.
"DWI's became a problem so the DWI laws were enacted," said Sevey.
If the legislation gets passed, Texas would be the 40th state to have a no texting while driving law for all drivers.
It is an idea that college student amber Shaffer agrees with.
"If I know I'm in a situation where I need to contact somebody I usually pull over, so yeah I think it is safer for people to put up their phones while driving," said Shaffer.
DPS spokesman, David Hendry says, whether the bill is passed or not, it is always a good thing to make sure drivers are educated.
"One of the big things we can do is educating them on what the possibilities are if they are texting while driving and involved in an accident. Sometimes we get second chances on things and sometimes we don't," said Hendry.
Some law makers hope a possible new law will give a second chance and save a life.