§291-17  Mobile electronic devices; use while operating a commercial motor vehicle prohibited.  (a)  No person with a commercial driver's license shall use a mobile electronic device, including using the mobile electronic device for texting as defined under section 286-231, while operating a commercial motor vehicle, as defined under section 286-2.

     (b)  The use of a mobile electronic device for the sole purpose of making a "911" emergency communication shall be an affirmative defense to this section.

     (c)  The following persons shall be exempt from the provisions of subsection (a):

     (1)  Emergency responders using a mobile electronic device while in the performance and scope of their official duties;

     (2)  Drivers using two-way radios while in the performance and scope of their work-related duties and who are operating motor carrier vehicles as defined in section 286-201; and

     (3)  Drivers holding a valid amateur radio operator license issued by the Federal Communications Commission and using a half-duplex two-way radio.

     (d)  Any person who is convicted of violating subsection (a) shall be fined not more than $2,750 in addition to the driving disqualification of section 286-240(e).

     (e)  As used in this section:

     "Emergency responders" means any firefighters, emergency medical technicians, mobile intensive care technicians, emergency management workers, police officers, and federal and state law enforcement officers.

     "Mobile electronic device" means any handheld or other portable electronic equipment recognized by the citing officer or other witness to be capable of providing wireless or data communications, or both, between two or more persons or of providing amusement, including but not limited to a cellular phone, text messaging device, paging device, personal digital assistant, laptop computer, video game, or digital photographic device, or any device to input, write, send, receive, or read text, but does not include any equipment installed in a commercial motor vehicle for the purpose of providing audio, navigation, or emergency assistance to the operator of the commercial motor vehicle or video entertainment to the passengers in the rear seats of the commercial motor vehicle. A "two-way radio" or Private Land Mobile Radio System as defined by title 47 of the Code of Federal Regulations, part 90, when used for business purposes, shall not be considered to be a "mobile electronic device".

     "Operate a commercial motor vehicle" means to drive or assume actual physical control of a commercial motor vehicle upon a public way, street, road, or highway in the State.

     "Texting" means the same as defined under [section] 286-231.

     "Use or using a mobile electronic device" means holding a mobile electronic device while operating a commercial motor vehicle. [L 2012, c 311, §1; am L 2014, c 111, §28]