Open Accessibility Menu

Federal Rule Bans Use of Hand-Held Cell Phones by Commercial Drivers

Casey Woodruff

Furthering the fight to end distracted driving, the U.S. Department of Transportation, through U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, announced a final rule banning interstate commercial (truck and bus) drivers from using hand-held cell phones. The final rule builds off the 2010 Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) texting ban by prohibiting interstate truck and bus drivers from using hand-held cell phones to make calls while behind the wheel, limiting the potential for Chicago semi tractor-trailer accidents caused by distracted driving. Commercial drivers who violate the new rule will face fines up to $2,750 per offense and risk being “disqualified from operating a commercial” vehicle for multiple violations of the rule. If a commercial driver is involved in two or more serious accidents, Illinois and other states have the option to revoke the driver’s commercial driver’s license (CDL). Trucking and bus companies that permit drivers to use hand-held cell phones may be fined $11,000.

Distracted Drivers Create Safety Risks on Busy Chicago Roadways

The hand-held cell phone ban is aimed at improving the safety of America’s roads by preventing devastating trucking accidents. According to FMCSA research, commercial drivers are three times more likely to be involved in an accident while reaching for objects like cell phones. Further, accidents are six times more likely to occur when a commercial driver is dialing a hand-held cell phone. Noting the safety aspects of the new rule, Secretary LaHood stated, “I hope that this rule will save lives by helping commercial drivers stay laser-focused on safety at all times while behind the wheel.” The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that accidents involving distracted drivers killed approximately 5474 people and injured nearly 500,000 more in 2009. The NHTSA estimates that fatalities resulting from distracted-driving accidents accounted for 16 percent of all traffic fatalities.

Source: U.S. Department of Transportation, “U.S. Transportation Secretary LaHood Announces Final Rule That Bans Hand-Held Cell Phone Use by Drivers of Buses and Large Trucks,” 23 November 2011

Categories:
  • "I had an awesome experience with Dexter Evans!"

    "I was recently injured in an auto accident and Dexter Evans handled my case. He is the best. Awesome experience. Definitely would recommend to anyone!"

  • "They always keep in touch & are quick to respond."

    "I want to thank attorney Jon Walker for all his work on my worker's comp case. He explains everything in detail to you so you understand. Always kept in touch, you didn't have ..."

  • "I will definitely recommend them!"

    "I was injured in an auto accident and Dexter Evans handled my case. He was awesome. I will definitely recommend them to friends and family."

  • "I was very happy with the outcome of my case!"

    "A friend referred me to Woodruff Johnson & Evans. Attorney Jay Johnson explained the process so that I understood what was going on with my case. He was responsive to my ..."

  • "I was very satisfied with the results!"

    "I was referred to Woodruff Johnson & Evans by a friend who had used them in the past. Everyone I had contact with was so kind and polite. My lawyer, Jay Johnson, explained the ..."

  • "Woodruff Johnson & Evans helped settled my case when the insurance company refused to pay my medical bill!"

    "I consulted the lawyers from Woodruff Johnson & Evans and they settled my case when the insurance company refused to pay my medical bill! I think I will recommend people to ..."

  • "Dexter Evans was incredible at handling my auto-accident case & provided constant communication about any questions or concerns I had!"

    "Dexter (DJ) Evans was incredible at handling my auto-accident case and provided constant communication about any questions or concerns I had. He addressed every concern I had ..."

  • "Steven was helpful in preparing me for a deposition and was very instrumental in gathering details about the location of my slip and fall!"

    "Steven was helpful in preparing me for a deposition and was very instrumental in gathering details about the location of my slip and fall. He negotiated what I thought was a ..."

View All Testimonials

Get Your Free Consultation

  • Please enter your First Name.
  • Please enter your Last Name.
  • This isn't a valid phone number.
    Please enter your phone number.
    You entered an invalid number.
  • This isn't a valid email address.
    Please enter your email address.
  • Please make a selection.
  • Please enter a message.