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Drunk driving charges can be problematic for commercial drivers

On Behalf of | May 7, 2024 | Drunk Driving |

In California, any allegation of driving under the influence can cause problems for the driver. Not only might they lose their driver’s license, but they will face hefty fines and the possibility of jail time. Some, however, can even have their livelihoods taken away. This is particularly true for commercial drivers.

For example, if a trucker is stopped on suspicion of DUI and arrested, the amount of alcohol they can have in their system is less than it is for a driver on a conventional license. This will not only put them at risk for legal consequences, but their job can be in jeopardy. The same is true if it is a for-hire vehicle. In these cases, knowing how to formulate a comprehensive defense is imperative.

Know the level of alcohol that can lead to an arrest for a commercial driver

According to state law for drivers with a regular driver’s license, the blood alcohol concentration to make an arrest for DUI is 0.08%. If it is a commercial driver, it is 0.04%. The same is true for if it is a for-hire vehicle and the driver has a passenger in the vehicle at the time.

After they have been tested and found to have 0.04% in their system, they will have their license suspended. Since this will deprive a commercial driver of their ability to work, they will want to try to get reinstated as soon as possible. Reinstatement will require that the driver will need to take part in a program and pay a fine.

Although commercial drivers and others who drive for a living will be understandably fearful about their future, there are avenues of defense that can be effective and could potentially result in an acquittal. Law enforcement cannot stop vehicles at random. They need probable cause. The breath test could have been questionable due to the machine not being properly calibrated or maintained. The driver could have a reasonable explanation as to why they appeared to be under the influence. It is crucial to explore all options.

A commercial driver who is charged with DUI needs to understand the ramifications personally, legally, financially and professionally. There are strategies that can be effective in fighting these charges, but it is essential to gather evidence and act quickly. Knowing how to proceed may require aggressive guidance.