Drunk Driving With A CDL and Its Consequences

When a person gets arrested for driving under the influence then it can impact the person’s life significantly, especially when the person has a CDL or commercial driving license. When a person drives a vehicle for his career then the consequences for this is quite severe than just expensive fines and extensive jail time.

In the state of Pennsylvania, there are several occupations where the workers are required to have a license so that they can perform duties and tasks of their jobs. For instance, ambulance drivers, bus drivers and truck drivers must have commercial driver license or some type of occupational license.

The commercial drivers are strictly prohibited from being in physical control or operating a vehicle under the influence of drugs, alcohol or other such substances in their system. If the person is caught in any such situation then the penalties for drunk driving in Pennsylvania are quite severe and he or she can have their driving privileges revoked or suspended.

penalties for drunk driving in Pennsylvania

A driver who has a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or above is considered to be intoxicated in the state of Pennsylvania. Though, the legal limit for drivers with CDL is much lower at 0.04. If the driver is stopped by a police and his BAC is somewhere between 0.04 and 0.159 then it would be considered a high rate DUI.

One case where commercial drivers are similar to regular licensed drivers is when both have given their consent to have a chemical test done if stopped for a DUI. This means that if you are a CDL driver then it is expected that you give your consent to breath, blood or urine test for determining the level of intoxication.

If you refuse to give your nod to a chemical test then it could end up in disqualification of your license to operate a vehicle. This could affect a person’s career severely plus his or her personal life. If the commercial driver is stopped by a law enforcement officer when he or she is off duty then the normal BAC requirement is 0.08. However, there may be professional consequences for the offense such as one-year CDL suspension and other penalties too.

The penalties for drunk driving in Pennsylvania are based on various factors such as the criminal history of the driver and the level of impairment. For example, if this is the first offense of the individual then the punishment would not be that harsh as compared to the third offense.

Even if it seems that it is impossible to have your CDL reinstated but it can be done. For that a driver has to do the following:

  • Pass the CDL driving and knowledge tests
  • Pay the re-qualification fees
  • Pass another knowledge test to get the hazardous material endorsement

If you get a subsequent or second commercial DUI then it could mean having your commercial driver license disqualified for life. However, there are some cases where a driver might be eligible for restoration after a period of 10 years under particular strict conditions.

He is an experienced criminal lawyer who has his offices in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. He helps people with different type of cases such as DUI/DWI, Traffic Violations, Penalties, etc. You can visit his site mikethetrafficlawyer.com for more information.