Sugar Land, TX – Sugar Land City Council recently repealed a new distracted-driving ordinance after the Texas Legislature approved a less restrictive law that preempts local control.
Sugar Land’s law was approved in February and prohibited the use of portable electronic devices while driving a vehicle in Sugar Land unless the device was in hands-free mode or being used for an emergency. The law included portable electronic devices including mobile phones, personal digital assistants, MP3s or other hand-held music players, electronic reading devices, laptop computers, pagers, electronic game devices and more.
The new state law preempts all local distracted-driving ordinances and only prohibits texting while driving. The state’s law is difficult to enforce according to the Sugar Land Police Department.
Sugar Land’s distracted driving ordinance was originally enacted following an extensive education campaign and public review process. The public was presented with three options and chose to restrict the use of portable electronic devices while operating a vehicle.
With the state’s requirement for a less restrictive law, Sugar Land police will focus on continued public education to encourage motorists to avoid the use of electronic devices while driving.