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Denver Criminal Defense Attorney Discusses Commercial Drivers Charged With DUI


December 13, 2017

Most drivers have a standard driver’s license, however anyone who drives a commercial vehicle for work must get a commercial driver’s license. Commercial drivers follow many of the same rules of the road that other drivers do. However, there is one law that has a different set of rules for commercial drivers. Here’s what commercial drivers need to know about driving under the influence according to a top Denver criminal defense attorney:

The Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) Legal Limit

The legal limit in most cases is 0.08%, which means a driver who has a BAC above this level is considered intoxicated. However, the legal limit is significantly lower for drivers that have a commercial driver’s license. Anyone who is a commercial driver can be taken into custody and charged with DUI if their BAC is above a 0.04%. It doesn’t take much alcohol to raise your BAC level to a 0.04%, which is why commercial drivers must be incredibly cautious.

DUI Consequences For Commercial Drivers

Commercial drivers, just like other drivers, face consequences for driving while intoxicated. But the consequences are different, and some may say more serious, for commercial drivers.

Commercial drivers will lose their commercial driver’s license for one year after their first DUI conviction. Without this license, commercial drivers are unable to operate tractor-trailers, flatbeds, school buses, city buses, box trucks, and other commercial vehicles. Since this is how commercial drivers make a living, losing their license will significantly impact their ability to earn money.

If a commercial driver was transporting hazardous material at the time of his arrest, his driver’s license can be revoked for a period of three years, even if this is the first DUI on his record.

The consequences are even more serious for commercial drivers who are convicted of two DUIs. A commercial driver who is convicted of a second DUI offense will permanently lose his commercial driver’s license. This is true even if the driver was in his own vehicle, not a commercial vehicle, at the time he was arrested.

In addition to losing their license, commercial drivers face the same other criminal consequences that other drivers face if they are convicted of DUI, including jail time, probation, community service, and fines. What are the Colorado DUI laws?

Fighting For Driving Privileges

All drivers—including commercial drivers—have the right to fight for their driving privileges immediately after a DUI arrest. Drivers must schedule a hearing with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) within seven days following their arrest. If they present a convincing case during this hearing, they may be able to hold onto their driving privileges so they can continue to make a living.

If you are a commercial driver and have been charged with driving under the influence, get in touch with the Law Office of John Buckley as soon as possible. John L. Buckley will work tirelessly to protect your driving privileges and your rights. Contact John L. Buckley as soon as possible after an arrest to schedule a legal consultation regarding your DUI case.