State Politics

Can you stop your teen from texting and driving? Try these apps

Texting while driving became illegal in Texas on Friday. Texas is the 47th state to ban texting while driving.
Texting while driving became illegal in Texas on Friday. Texas is the 47th state to ban texting while driving. Getty Images/iStockphoto

Some parents are worried about their younger drivers and whether they will obey the new Texas law banning texting and driving that went into effect Friday.

Here are some apps and devices that can shut down cellphones while someone — regardless of age — is behind the wheel.

Cellcontrol: A subscription to this service gives parents access to a device that goes under the dashboard and an app to block your driver from texting while driving. It also disables other features, such as the camera, while they are driving.

DriveSafeMode: This app also prevents a driver from emailing or texting while behind the wheel. Not only that, but it also notifies a parent when the phone is being used — and if the motorist turns off the app while on the road.

Lifesaver: This is another app that blocks phone use while the car is in motion, even displaying a “Keep Your Eyes on the Road” banner on the phone.

Do Not Disturb While Driving: Apple users should soon have the option of enabling this setting to prevent texts and other messages from coming in while you are driving. If connected to hands-free technology, calls will be allowed. Otherwise, it will send an automatic response that you’re driving and will get back to them soon.

Surete: This is a device and app combination that stops drivers from texting, emailing or even using social media when behind the wheel. The app locks the smartphone once the vehicle starts, but it does allow GPS, emergency calls and the use of apps previously approved by the administrator (aka, you, the parent).

There’s a device that’s installed under the hood of the car, which connects the starter fuse and syncs to the app.

This article includes information from Star-Telegram archives.

Anna Tinsley: 817-390-7610, @annatinsley

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