Strict new rules went into effect for New York City cab drivers on Friday that ban drivers from using electronic devices while driving. The ban includes hands-free Bluetooth devices.
The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) now prohibits the use of all forms of distractive electronic devices by its licensees in the taxicab, livery, black car, luxury limousine, commuter van and paratransit vehicles.
The TLC will mark the effective date by commencing an enforcement “crackdown” on violators of the new regulations by TLC officers.
These new regulations prohibit drivers from even having a Bluetooth device in their ear.
The new rules also cover portable gaming systems, personal digital assistants (PDAs), and portable music players.
The new regulations create a true “three strikes and you’re out” reality for TLC licensed drivers. Licenses would be revoked for three violations within a 15-month period.
The TLC will also now allow passengers to testify via phone at hearings where drivers are accused of using the devices.