Back in September we posted about the fact that after a tragic truck accident, the National Transportation Safety Board had asked the federal government to make a law that would ban all truckers from using cellphones. Earlier this month, that request became a reality when the federal government enacted a handheld cellphone ban for all commercial vehicle drivers.
Under this new ban, those truck drivers who are caught talking on their cellphone while driving can be fined up to $2,750. Additionally, trucking companies can also get in trouble for allowing their drivers to talk on the phone while driving. According to sources, if it's learned that a company is allowing the use of handheld cellphones, the company can end up being fined up to $11,000.
This cellphone ban also includes all commercial vehicle drivers, like truck drivers, taxi drivers, limousine drivers and bus drivers. However, while handheld phones are banned, drivers can still use hands free phones.
And while the ban does come with some pushback from truck drivers who claim their phones are their only way to connect with family and maintain contact with the rest of the world, some companies are totally on board with the idea. One taxi company owner said that even before the ban, he never allowed his drivers to talk on their phones while driving.
"You take your eyes off the road for a second and anything can happen," the owner said.
The hope is that with this ban, drivers will not be driving distracted by their cellphones. In turn, this could result in less truck accidents in not only Tennessee, but around the rest of the country too.