TORONTO, Ont. -- The use of CB radios by commercial drivers has been exempted under Ontario’s hand-held devices ban for another five years by the provincial government.
Ontario Minister of Transportation Bob Chiarelli made the announcement Sept. 21. The change becomes effective Jan. 1 and ends on Jan. 1, 2018.
The original exemption was introduced in 2009 as part of Ontario’s distracted driving laws and was designed to allow time for hands-free alternatives to two-way radio technology to be developed and commercialized.
The Ontario Trucking Association says the minister did the “right thing” by extending the exemption, noting that widespread use of CB alternatives has not happened to any great extent.
In a letter to OTA, Chiarelli said he “believe(s) extending the exemption period is sufficient time for a commercially viable market to develop hands-free alternatives to two-way radio technology.”
“OTA is pleased with the Ministry’s willingness to work with us on these sorts of issues,” says OTA president David Bradley. “CB radios continue to play a key role in the day-to-day lives of truck drivers in that they serve as a vital communications tool for drivers from both a safety and operations perspective.”