New rules for cell phone use by truck drivers go into effect January 3rd 2012

Here are the highlights on the final ruling on cell phone use from the FMCSA. 
1Q: What is the effective date of the Mobile Telephone rule?
 A: The effective date of the rule is January 3, 2012.

2Q: Are wired or wireless earpieces allowed?
 A: Yes. Hands-free use of a mobile telephone is allowed using either a wired or wireless earpiece, or the speakerphone function of the mobile telephone. Wireless connection of the mobile telephone to the vehicle for hands-free operation of the telephone, which would allow the use of single-button controls on the steering wheel or dashboard, would also be allowed.

3Q: Is Push-to-Talk allowed?
 A: No. A driver’s use of the Push-to-Talk function on a mobile telephone violates the prohibition against holding the phone. This includes the continuous holding of a button that is necessary to use a Push-to-Talk feature through a mobile telephone, even when the driver is using a connected microphone or wireless earphone.