Cracking Down on Uninsured Drivers

by Victor Lopez
NewsWest 9

We all now what happens when you get into an accident with an unisured driver.   That's why TXDOT, DPS, and other state agencies, are joining forces to let motorists know it's the end of the road, if you're caught driving without insurance.

"Texas wants to send a message and that is we're cracking down on uninsured motorists," Lt. Louis Sanches, with the Texas Department of Public Safety said.

The days of using the excuse, "I havent got my new card yet," are over.

"Almost 80 percent of Texans have insurance.  That means still that one in five drivers is uninsured," Rebecca Davio, with the Texas Department of Transportation, said.

Thanks to a new database called "Texas Sure," law enforcement officials have information, literally at their fingertips.

They can tell whether or not a vehicle has liability coverage, as required by state law.

"After an officer pulls over a vehicle for a traffic violation, they enter the license plate.  That will help us determine if the vehicle has insurance or not.  Then we can take appropriate action," Sanchez said.

Insurance companies across the state send information to the data base on a weekly basis.

The participating state agencies call the launch of "Texas Sure," a wake up call for texas unisured drivers.   They say straight out, if you're not covered, you'll be discovered.

Texas law requires a minimum liability coverage of $25,000 per injured person and $25,000 for property damage.

If you're caught driving without liability insurance, it could cost you up to hundreds of dollars in fines and court costs.   You could even lose your license.

"If you're caught driving without insurance, the fines are steep.  Even on your first time, you could face a fine of $350 and additional costs," Sanchez said.

If you already have insurance, you dont have anything to worry about.   Just keep on carrying your proof of insurance card like you always do.

"Don't forget to carry your insurance card with you.  That's what the law says.  It's still a requirement; it's just a double check," Davio said.

Texas sure is currently being field tested in the Austin area.  

It should be in full effect state wide later this Summer.