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Commercial drivers have more to lose after a DUI charge

On Behalf of | Dec 2, 2021 | DUI |

There are numerous possible penalties for a driving under the influence (DUI) charge in Kentucky. The more aggravating factors and previous charges on your record, the more serious the penalties will be. Drivers could face significant fines and jail time in addition to the loss of their driver’s license.

Those consequences can present a challenge for any adult, but they are particularly problematic for those who drive professionally. If you have a commercial driver’s license (CDL), facing a license suspension means that you can’t do your job. You will likely need to fight the charges against you or prepare for a length unpaid break from employment because there are increased risks for commercial drivers who faced a DUI charge.

Any drunk driving arrest endangers your CDL

If police officers pull you over while you are on the job and you exceed the legal limit for blood-alcohol concentration, they will arrest you. The consequences of the charges you face will obviously include a negative impact on your commercial license.

However, you don’t have to get in trouble while working for a DUI in Kentucky to affect your CDL. If you get arrested for impaired driving even in your own personal vehicle, that will affect your eligibility for your commercial license. There is usually a mandatory one-year suspension for any CDL holder convicted of an impaired driving offense.

Rather than pleading guilty to a charge from driving on your own time in the hope that your employer won’t find out, fighting back against the charge may be the only way to protect your career.

Commercial drivers are also subject to a stricter limit

In addition to the enhanced professional risks you have as a commercial driver, you also have to worry about stricter limits on your behavior.

The average person will face DUI charges if their chemical testing shows a BAC higher than 0.08%. For commercial drivers, the legal limit for their BAC is actually half of that. While you are in a commercial vehicle, a BAC of just 0.04% could be enough to lead to your arrest.

Understanding the enhanced risk that commercial drivers face for drunk driving charges can help you protect yourself if you drive for your living.