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Is it legal to use a two way radio whilst driving?

London taxiThe short answer

The short answer is yes – you may legally use a two way radio while driving, as long as this does not cause your driving to suffer in any way.

The detail behind this simplified answer, and which every two way radio user should be aware of, requires a slightly fuller explanation.

Looking at the bigger picture

Most drivers are aware that it’s an offence to use a hand-held mobile phone while driving. This also applies to any “interactive communications device”, but an exemption applies for two way radios which are designed or adapted:

  1. for the purpose of transmitting and receiving spoken messages; and
  2. to operate on any frequency other than 880 MHz to 915 MHz, 925 MHz to 960 MHz, 1710 MHz to 1785 MHz, 1805 MHz to 1880 MHz, 1900 MHz to 1980 MHz or 2110 MHz to 2170 MHz.

This includes CB radios as they operate within the 27 MHz band.

The exception was created because so many government organisations and private companies (for example council departments and taxi companies) use them. 

Even allowing for this legal exemption, the police can still stop you if they believe your use of a two way radio is distracting you from your driving.  This could result in a fixed penalty and points on your licence, or in extreme cases, even a disqualification.

In short, use your two way radio with care when driving and try to minimise the amount you have to fiddle with volume controls, transmitter and tuning buttons.

For more advice and information, call the experts here at DCS 2 Way Radio on 0800 294 7766.

Released On 10th Mar 2015

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