ASK A COP — Is a driver’s license legally required in Texas?

Published 12:02 am Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Rob from Port Arthur asks: I’ve been doing research on driver’s licenses in the United States of America and believe I found out that I don’t need a license to drive in the United States. I just wanted to know was that true or not?

Answer: If you keep this quote in mind, you will be on the right track — driving is a Privilege, NOT a Right! Rob, I don’t know of a state in the United States of America that doen’t require an operator of a motor vehicle to have a valid state-issued driver’s license before they get behind the wheel of a moving motor vehicle on the roadway. Remember, anyone can upload a video or enter a statement on YouTube or online, so be careful where and whom you get your information from.

Just because you can read it online doesn’t mean that it’s true. I can’t speak of all states in America but believe me when I say everyone in Texas who operates a motor vehicle on the roads are required to have a valid state-issued driver’s license on their person. If you get behind the wheel in the state of Texas without a driver’s license, the state of Texas can take your driver’s license away. I would love to see you or anyone try to challenge a citation for driving without a valid driver’s license in the municipal court of Port Arthur or ANY court in America.

Sidney from Port Arthur: I would like to know how you are supposed to get to most of the businesses on 39th Street in Groves. There is a double yellow line almost all of the way in Groves. Most people have to cross the double yellow line to get in their driveway. Also on FM 365 they have the same situation.

Answer: We would have quite a mess on our hands if you were NOT allowed to turn across double yellow lines in Texas. The act of turning across double yellow lines in Texas is NOT ILLEGAL! In Texas, the double yellow line means NO PASSING, no matter if you can plainly see no other vehicle is coming your way from a long distance. All of the vehicles you are finding crossing the double yellow line are obeying the law. Keep in mind you CANNOT turn across a DOUBLE WHITE LINE in Texas.

T J from Bridge City asks: I commute to Port Arthur daily on Highways 73 and 69. I agree with you that motorist should reduce their speeds during inclement weather like ice, snow, rain and fog. Due to drivers’ failures to adhere to this driving procedure, I have seen more than my fair share of wrecks going and coming from work. Can you advise what we should do if we are involved in a 5-car wreck. Do we get out and check on others? My friend said that’s our duty.

Answer: Your friend does have a point when he suggests to check on the welfare of the other motorists involved in the 5-car crash. But we suffer a great risk when we exit our vehicles during inclement or clear weather. I know it is instinctive for many to exit their vehicle to review the damage if they are not injured.

I suggest that all persons are safer inside their vehicles than standing or walking on the highways with 3- and 4-ton vehicles moving various speeds. If another vehicle should happen to join the crash, you would be much more protected inside your vehicle than taking on that vehicle standing on the highway. Today, we ALL have cell phones. Just be patient in your vehicle and call 911 to report the crash. If you exit to check on the welfare of others, as soon as is practical return to your vehicle or get into another vehicle if you are administering aid.

Join Me, Officer Rickey Antoine and the CREW: Stephen Buzzard Boots Mosley, Lelo mouth of Hwy 69/73 Washington & Tejas Lil Man Morning Star for Ask A Cop live on KSAP 96.9 FM The Breeze every Tuesday from 1 to 2:30 p.m. as we discuss the “Ask A Cop” printed in The News. You can also tune in via the Internet at ksapthebreeze.org. Call in your question live at 409-982-0247. Remember you can email questions at torickey.antoine@portarthurtx.gov, call 409-983-8673 for voice mail or mail them to: Ofc. Rickey Antoine, 645 4th Street, Port Arthur, Texas, 77640. If you see me in public you can always “Ask A Cop”!