Massachusetts prohibits driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs and makes it illegal to drive with a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or higher. However, commercial drivers are automatically subjected to stricter rules and regulations. If you have a CDL, a DUI can have a major impact on your employment and your life. Here’s what you need to know.
Consequences of a First Offense DUI Charge
Any of the following offenses can result in a one-year loss of your CDL license:
- Refusing to take a breathalyzer test
- Conviction of a DUI
- Operating a commercial vehicle with a BAC of .04% or above
Since Massachusetts commercial driver’s license law is based on federal law, an out of state DUI conviction has the same impact on a CDL as if the offense occurred here. If you receive a first conviction for DUI while operating a commercial truck with hazardous materials, your CDL can be revoked for 3 years.
Consequences of a Second Offense DUI
If you are convicted of a DUI for a second time, you face a lifetime suspension of your CDL. Additionally, if you have been convicted of DUI and refuse a breathalyzer test during a second stop, you also face a lifetime suspension.
Aside from a DUI charge, your license can also be suspended for serious traffic violations. If you are convicted of two or more serious traffic violations while operating a commercial vehicle within a three-year period, your CDL can be suspended for at least 60 days. Examples of serious traffic violations include:
- Excessive speeding (15 mph above the posted speed limit)
- Operating to endanger
- Reckless driving
- Improper or erratic traffic lane changes
- Following a vehicle too close
How a DUI Attorney Can Help
If you drive for a living, having your CDL suspended means the loss of your job. Even if you get your commercial driver’s license back, you may not be rehired, or if you are hired, your insurance rates may go up significantly. Luckily, it is possible to fight a DUI charge and win. Your attorney can object to the accuracy of the chemical test, examine the data and history of a machine or lab for discrepancies, or challenge whether the arrest was legal.
At Flanagan & Associates, I can provide the aggressive defense you need in the courtroom. I pride myself on getting you the results you need. Call (617) 651-3220 or contact me online for a free consultation.