Rep. Tom Craddick Kicks Off AT&T Texting While Driving Tour

Rep. Tom Craddick Kicks Off AT&T Texting While Driving Tour

by Kim Powell
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND - "1.6 million people are in an accident because of cell phones every year in the United States, of that, 200,000 are from texting," State Representative Tom Craddick said.

Craddick spoke Sunday at the first time stop of AT&T's Texting While Driving Tour in Midland. He is aiming to bring awareness to the dangers of texting and driving in hopes that the state will pass a law banning cell phone use on the roads.

"We just feel that now 44 states have it into effect. When we first passed it, only nine states had it," Craddick SAID. "It shows that one-fifth of all the accidents in the country are from distracted driving so we feel it's something the state needs for safety reasons."

AT&T is touring the state all week with a texting while driving simulator that really puts it into perspective just how distracted someone gets when you try to reply to a text. Those who attended listened to several speakers who had a personal connection to the cause and AT&T also had people sign a pledge in support of the campaign.

"The main reason that we're doing this is because the citizens of Texas deserve to be safe," AT&T Regional Director, Randy Teakell, said.

"Stop DWI got into the texting issue about six years ago when it really was apparent it was going to become a very serious problem," Charles Hodges, CEO of Stop DWI, said.

The tour ends on September 19 for the "It Can Wait" national day of awareness.

"People abide by the law if we can pass it, and we can't pass it until we get your support," Craddick said.

"I've been in Midland since 1958 and this is my home and I want to keep it safe," Sue Brannon, who supports the campaign, said.