As a commercial driver, one thing that you have probably learned is that the legal limit for your blood alcohol content is only 0.04% instead of 0.08%. This variance from the norm was done for a few reasons. Some of those reasons include the fact that:
- Commercial drivers are handling heavier equipment and need better response times
- Commercial drivers pose a greater threat when driving under the influence
- Insurers don’t want to insure drivers who drink and drive
Unfortunately, having such a low limit does pose its own issues for some drivers. For example, someone who binge drinks on a Sunday night prior to working the following day might still have a high BAC the next morning. Even if they have waited the required four hours between their last drink and getting behind the wheel, they may not be legally allowed, even if their BAC is .04% or .05%.
It’s important to remember that DUIs can be given even when you’re under the limit. For commercial drivers, the limit is already low, but even a .01 or .02% BAC could lead to charges if you mixed alcohol with any medications or were driving dangerously.
As a commercial driver, you should know that being arrested for a DUI is a serious issue. You could lose your license upon conviction, and even if you get it back, you may be uninsurable. For this reason, it’s important for you to talk to your attorney about diversion programs as well as opportunities to reduce or eliminate the charges that you face. Our website has more on CDL licenses, DUIs and what to do if you’re accused of a crime that threatens your license.