ASK A COP — What is the law about drowsy driving in Texas?

Published 7:30 am Tuesday, July 5, 2022

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Angela from Orange asks: My husband works shift work and is often working doubles and his commute is almost 45 minutes each way. He always drinking coffee and the five-hour energy drinks to stay alert, but I don’t think this is safe. We always have small spats about him driving on the road tired. Is there a law about being drowsy under the wheel?

Answer: Well, unfortunately there is no law against Drowsy Driving unless they are driving erratic, or swerving in and out of their lane. Angela you bring up an important situation of drowsy driving, because many motorists are drowsy driving and are fine upstanding members of our community. Drowsy driving can be just as dangerous and drunk driving because your reaction time and perception slows down. Studies have shown that someone who has been awake for 24 hours without sleep is just as impaired as someone drinking alcohol and the blood alcohol content or BBC is 0.08. We need to make a better decision and either find a rest area or get out and take a walk, drink coffee or energy drink. Nothing will be as effective as some good ole uninterrupted SLEEP! Driving while drowsy is dangerous, and we motorists should take extra precautions when getting behind the wheel to assure that we are rested enough to complete our journey.

Officer Rickey Antoine

Goodman from Port Arthur asks: Is it true that the state of Texas started a vehicle registration denial program for those who are behind on child support? Can you please explain?

Answer: YES, YES, YES. The state of Texas has launched its newest program to go after noncustodial parents who are delinquent on the child support payments. The state of Texas began this program on Sept. 1, 2016. If someone is at least six months delinquent on their child support payments, they will no longer be able to renew their vehicle registration. Keep this in mind, the state Office of Attorney General will mail you a notice within 90 days of your renewal advising that you will NOT be able to renew your vehicle registration at your local department of motor vehicles until you contact them first. Your fight will NOT be with the Department of Motor Vehicles, so don’t go there demanding your renewal. There will be absolutely nothing they can assist you with. You will need to contact the Office of Attorney General at 1-866-646-5611 to make payment arrangements. Keep in mind there are other items the Office of Attorney General is suspending because of delinquent payments of at least three months, such as driver’s licenses and permits ranging from medical, dental and law licenses to hunting and fishing licenses.

Janet from Beaumont asks: Is there a maximum number of persons that can sit in the front seat of a motor vehicle? We were going to a party and four people piled in the front seat. My cousin told me that was too many people in the front seat, and we should have been stopped and given a ticket. If this is true, who would get the ticket: the driver or the passengers?

Answer: When the front seat passengers, including the driver, exceeds three persons in a motor vehicle, the state of Texas says the driver’s view to the front and sides of the vehicle cannot obstructed. In this case, the driver would receive the citation if the officer so elected to cite someone for driver obstruction. It may also be worthy to note that there will only be seat belt positions for three persons, and as long as all seating positions in the vehicle are secured by a safety belt, a fourth passenger can sit in the front seat without being secured by a safety belt as long as the driver’s vision is not obstructed.

Join Me, Officer Rickey Antoine and the CREW: Stephen “Buzzard Boots” Mosley, Lelo “mouth of Hwy 69/73” Washington & Tejas “Lil Man” Moorin Star for Ask A Cop live on KSAP 96.9 FM The Breeze every Tuesday from 1 to 3 p.m. as we discuss in detail the newly released “Ask A Cop” article. You can also tune in via Ask your question live at 409-982-0247. Now you can make a comment or ask via TEXT 409-748-6106. Remember to email questions to, call 409-983-8673 for voice mail question or mail them to: Ofc. Rickey Antoine, 645 4th Street, Port Arthur, Texas, 77640. If you happen to see me in public, you can always approach and “Ask A Cop!”