Reorganized and updated FCC Personal Radio Services (PRS) Part 95 rules have been published in The Federal Register. Among other things, the PRS covers the Family Radio Service (FRS), General Mobile Radio Service (GMRS), and the Citizens Band Radio Service (CBRS).
The revised rules allot additional FRS channels and increase the power on certain FRS channels from 0.5 W to 2 W. FRS channels are in the 462.5625 – 462.7250 MHz range.
Effective September 30, 2019, it will be illegal to manufacture or import handheld portable radio equipment capable of operating under FRS rules and under other licensed or licensed-by-rule services. The FCC no longer will certify FRS devices that incorporate capabilities of GMRS capabilities or of other services. Existing GMRS/FRS combination radios that operate at power levels of less than 2 W ERP will be reclassified as FRS devices; existing GMRS/FRS radios that operate above that power level will be reclassified as GMRS devices, requiring an individual license.
Radios that can transmit on GMRS repeater input channels will continue to be licensed individually and not by rule.
Once the new rules are effective, CBers will be allowed to contact stations outside of the FCC-imposed — but widely disregarded — 155.3-mile distance limit.