In Pennsylvania, it is illegal to type or read messages on a mobile device. That means, if police sees a driver texting while driving, that driver could be fined $50.
Trying to avoid incoming text alerts while you are behind the wheel can be difficult. And, the app market isn’t really offering a lot of help.
Most safe driving apps cost money and seem to be more hassle than they are worth. Some read text messages out loud for the driver, which seems like it could be more distracting than actually reading a text message.
How to avoid your phone while driving –
- Lock your phone in a glove or console compartment and turn it on airplane mode. If you still find yourself reaching to find it, throw it in the trunk (gently).
- Give a passenger rights to your phone. If you have someone else riding with you, give them the rights to your phone. They can report what texts are coming in and can respond for you. *Note: don’t give your phone to your technology-illiterate Mom, because you will end up distracted trying to teach her how to open your text messages.
- Address all necessary texts, emails and phone calls before you start the car. This helps eliminate the reason for having to use your phone.
- Turn your radio on and sing. If you need a way to feel productive during your drive, work on your vocal abilities. (OK, maybe singing to the radio isn’t your thing, but you get the idea.)
If you still can’t resist the urge to use your phone while driving, here are some of your options:
For all phones –
Cellcontrol, $89: This is actually a device that you put inside your vehicle. When the car is moving, it locks the cellphone’s screen. It works for smartphones and dumb phones. Watch the video below to see how it works.
Apps available on Android and iPhone –
DriveSafe.ly, free: This app reads text messages aloud for you. Personally, I feel like this would distract me more than actually texting while driving. If that’s not the case for you, download it.
Only on Android –
AT&T DriveMode, free: When your vehicle is moving 25 mph or faster, this app sends auto-reply text messages to incoming texts. That way, friends and family will know you aren’t available to text now.
Textecution, $29.99. When your phone is moving faster than 10 mph, the app will disallow texting.
How do you resist the urge to text while driving? Share your tips in the comments.