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Residents react to CSPD enforcing hands-free ordinance

(KBTX)
Published: Feb. 28, 2020 at 9:53 PM CST
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The passage of College Station’s Hands-Free Ordinance is putting some resident’s minds at ease.

College Station resident, Humza Khalid, and his wife were involved in a car crash nearly four years ago on University Drive.

"Somebody ran a red light and crashed into our car full speed,” said Khalid. “Our car ended up being totaled.”

To this day he says he’s thankful he and his wife walked away from the crash.

"One second later, he would have hit my wife's door directly and she wouldn't have made it,” said Khalid.

Khalid says the driver admitted to being on his phone.

"We were one of the lucky few that were involved in a distracted driving accident,” said Khalid.

In Texas, it’s illegal to send an electronic message while driving. The City of College Station is taking that rule one step further with the Hands-Free Ordinance.

Drivers and Bicyclists can be fined up to $500 for having a cellphone in their hands when not at a complete stop.

“Having this whole issue backed by the police department can really help not only with awareness of the issue but the practicality of when someone gets hit and how that situation is handled,” said Khalid.

Suzanne Badger with SAFE 2 Save says the ordinance goes hand in hand with their app’s mission to prevent these crashes.

“When Government comes in and says ‘yes, we need to do this’ it validates everything that we stand for,” said Badger.

The ordinance will not go into effect until proper signage is posted to warn drivers of the change. Officials with College Station Police say it’s likely there will be a grace period before officers start writing tickets.

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