A commercial driver's license is required to operate commercial or heavy vehicles in the state of California. A commercial vehicle is any type of motor vehicle used for transporting goods or paid passengers. California DUI laws for commercial drivers are strict and the penalties severe. Commercial drivers are held to a higher standard when it comes to impaired driving. The legal limit for a driver operating a commercial vehicle is .04 percent blood alcohol content. This is half the .08 legal limit that applies to driver's with a standard California Class C license operating non-commercial vehicles. The DUI law for commercial drivers is set forth in California Vehicle Code Section 23152(d). The law creates the "presumption" that a driver who is operating a commercial vehicle with a BAC of .04 or greater is impaired. Two drinks will put most people over the .04 limit.
CONTACT our office today if you are a commercial driver facing DUI charges. The driver's license consequences are extremely harsh for commercial driver's convicted of DUI. A first DUI offense (Vehicle Code Sections 23152 or 23153) results in a one year commercial driver's license suspension. A second DUI offense results in a lifetime revocation of the person's commercial driver's license. It does not matter whether the driver was operating a commercial vehicle at the time. A commercial driver who receives a DUI in a regular "non-commercial" vehicle will still suffer the one year suspension or lifetime revocation. A commercial driver who suffers a 1st time DUI offense can give up their commercial license and apply for a regular Class C license. This will allow them to obtain a restricted driver's license after serving the 30 day hard suspension (assuming this case does not involve an accident or refusal). However, their commercial driving privileges will still remain suspended for one year. A commercial driver who suffers a 2nd DUI offense can apply for a regular Class C restricted license following a 90 day hard suspension (also assuming this case does not involve an accident or refusal). Their commercial driver's license will be revoked for life.
The other consequences for a commercial driver are severe. The driver's license suspension or revocation that results from a DUI conviction will likely cost them their job. 1st time offender commercial drivers whose license is reinstated after the one year suspension period may have difficulty getting a job. Employers will be reluctant to hire a driver who has a DUI on their record. Insurance rates will increase substantially. Years of training and education will be thrown away. If you are a commercial driver and were arrested for DUI CONTACT Berglund Law Office, P.C. immediately for a free and confidential consultation. DUI Lawyer Robert D. Berglund will personally call you to discuss the circumstances of your DUI arrest, the possible criminal charges that will be filed against you, and the driver's license implications.