Push-to-Talk Radios a Safe Choice for Drivers

Commercial drivers are allowed to use push-to-talk mobile communications equipment while driving as the driver does not reach for, dial, or hold the actual mobile phone in his/her hand while driving and the driver is able to touch the button needed to operate the push-to-talk feature from the normal seated driving position. For example, if the mobile phone is mounted in a cradle or similar device near the driver, or there is a remote push-to-talk button near the vehicle controls to allow the driver to communicate without reaching for, dialing, or holding the actual phone in his/her hands while driving, the equipment may be used.

United States Distracted Driver Law

Mobile Phone Restriction Rule For Commercial Motor Vehicle Drivers

The FMCSA and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) have published rules specifically prohibiting interstate truck and bus drivers and drivers who transport placardable quantities of hazardous materials from texting or using hand-held mobile phones while operating their vehicles. The joint rules are the latest actions by the U.S. Department of Transportation to end distracted driving. Violations can result in fines and/or driver disqualifications and will impact a motor carrier’s and/or driver’s Safety Measurement System (SMS) results.

No Texting While Driving

CMV drivers are prohibited from texting while driving. So what qualifies as texting? Texting means manually entering alphanumeric text into, or reading text from, an electronic device. This includes, but is not limited to, short message service, e-mailing, instant messaging, a command or request to access a Web page, or pressing more than a single button to initiate or terminate a voice communication using a mobile phone or engaging in any other form of electronic text retrieval or entry, for present or future communication.

Do not type or read a text message while driving a CMV!

Use Of Mobile Phones Is Restricted For CMV Drivers

This rule restricts a CMV driver from reaching for or holding a mobile phone to conduct a voice communication, as well as dialing by pressing more than a single button. CMV drivers who use a mobile phone while driving can only operate a hands-free phone located in close proximity. In short, the rule prohibits unsafely reaching for a device, holding a mobile phone, or pressing multiple buttons.

What Does This Rule Mean To Drivers And Carriers?

Fines, Penalties, And Disqualification

Using a hand-held mobile phone while driving a CMV can result in driver disqualification. Penalties can be up to $2,750 for drivers and up to $11,000 for employers who allow or require drivers to use a hand-held communications device while driving.

Multiple violations of the prohibition of using a hand-held mobile phone while driving a CMV can result in a driver disqualification by FMCSA. Multiple violations of State laws prohibiting use of a mobile phone while driving a CMV is a serious traffic violation that could result in a disqualification by a State of drivers required to have a Commercial Drivers License.

What Are The Risks?

Besides penalties and possible driver disqualification, recent research shows that the odds of being involved in a safety-critical event (e.g., crash, near-crash, unintentional lane deviation) are 23.2 times greater for CMV drivers who text while driving than for those who do not. Texting drivers took their eyes off the road for an average of 4.6 seconds. At 55 mph, this equates to a driver traveling the approximate length of a football field — without looking at the roadway! For CMV drivers who dial a mobile phone while driving, the odds of being involved in a safety-critical event are six times greater than for those who do not. Why take chances?

Bottom Line: Using a hand held device while driving is a serious traffic violation that could result in a driver disqualification.

It’s very easy to comply with the rules:

  • No Reaching
  • No Holding
  • No Dialing
  • No Texting
  • No Reading

We Can Help You Avoid Fines And Penalties And Comply

Motorola’s MOTOTRBO digital two-way radios are the preferred choice for businesses and organizations that need to safely and efficiently connect with their mobile workforce. MOTOTRBO complies with US DOT, FMCSA and PHMSA regulations.

Some of the benefits our Motorola digital system provides for the Commercial Driver Cell Phone Ban are:

  • DOT Regulation Compliant
  • Minimizes Distracted Driver Issues
  • Reduces Litigation Exposure
  • Improves Safety

Request A Demo

Take our Motorola digital system for a test drive in your own work environment. You’ll see the difference MOTOTRBO makes to your communications immediately.