If you have your commercial driver’s license and are accused of driving while intoxicated, you could face serious repercussions. The penalties can be severe and may impact your ability to remain in your career.
Operating while impaired is a serious crime, but you have a right to defend yourself against the allegations. Here is more information on what you should do if you are stopped for operating while impaired.
The first thing you should know about an OWI arrest involving someone with a CDL is that you can be placed out of service for several reasons, such as if:
- You drank alcohol in the last four hours
- You were drinking while driving
- You have a blood alcohol content of .015 grams per 100 milliliters of blood, 67 milliliters of urine or 210 liters of breath, as determined by blood, urine or Breathalyzer testing
- You refuse to take a preliminary breath test
You will be taken out of service for 24 hours immediately if any of these things occur.
When you operate a commercial motor vehicle, you’re held to a higher standard. As a result, you can be charged if you are operating the vehicle with an unlawful bodily alcohol level or if you are operating while impaired with a blood alcohol content of .04% on a Breathalyzer test. Understand that the limit for commercial drivers is half that of noncommercial drivers.
What happens if you refuse to take a chemical test?
If you don’t take a chemical test or are convicted of operating under the influence, you may lose your commercial license for up to a year for the first offense. If you were transporting hazardous materials, then you could lose your license for up to three years. For a second or third offense, you could lose your license for 10 years at a minimum.
What should you do if you are facing allegations of driving while impaired?
If you are accused of driving while drunk or high, it’s important to take action to defend yourself. A good defense may help you keep your commercial license and remain in your career while reducing any penalties you could face.