2.9.4 – Cell/Mobile Phones 49 CFR Part 383, 384, 390, 391 and 392 of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) and the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) restricts the use of hand-held mobile telephones by drivers of commercial motor vehicles (CMVs); and implements new driver disqualification sanctions for drivers of CMVs who fail to comply with this Federal restriction or who have multiple convictions for violating a State or local law or ordinance on motor vehicle traffic control that restricts the use of hand-held mobile telephones. Additionally, motor carriers are prohibited from requiring or allowing drivers of CMVs to use hand-held mobile telephones. The use of hand-held mobile telephones means, using at least one hand to hold a mobile telephone to conduct a voice communication dialing a mobile telephone by pressing more than a single button or moving from a seated driving position while restrained by a seat belt to reach fora mobile telephone. If you choose to use a mobile phone while operating a CMV, you may only use a hands free mobile phone that is located close to you and that can be operated in compliance with the rule to conduct a voice communication. Your CDL will be disqualified after two or more convictions of any state law on hand-held mobile telephone use while operating a CMV. Disqualification is 60 days for the second offense within 3 years and 120 days for three or more offenses within 3 years. In addition, the first and each subsequent violation of such a prohibition are subject to civil penalties imposed on such drivers, in an amount up to $2,750. Motor carriers must not allow nor require drivers to use a hand-held mobile telephone while driving. Employers may also be subject to civil penalties in an amount up to $11,000. There is an emergency exception that allows you to use your hand-held mobile telephones if necessary to communicate with law enforcement officials or other emergency services. Research shows that the odds of being involved in a safety-critical event (e.g., crash, near-crash, unintentional lane deviation) is 6 times greater for CMV drivers who engage in dialing a mobile telephone while driving than for those who do not. Dialing drivers took their eyes off the forward roadway for an average of 3.8 seconds. At 55 mph or 80.7 feet per second, this equates to a driver traveling 306 feet, the approximate length of a football field, without looking at the roadway. Your primary responsibility is to operate a motor vehicle safely. To do this, you must focus your full attention on the driving task. Note that hands-free devices are no less likely than hand-held cellphones to cause you to become distracted. Attention is diverted from the driving task while using either device.