If you hold a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) in Pennsylvania, your license is your livelihood. That’s why, if you’ve been accused of CDL DUI in PA, you have good reason to be nervous: your job is on the line.
If you are convicted of CDL DUI in PA, your license can be suspended for a minimum of 12 months, meaning you won’t be able to work for an entire year. Imagine the impact that will have on your career, your finances, and your life, and you can see why a full understanding of CDL DUI laws and penalties is so important.
Pennsylvania CDL DUI Laws
For CDL drivers in Pennsylvania, the legal limit for BAC is much lower than it is for non-commercial drivers. The State will consider you impaired for a BAC as low as .02. – a full 75% lower than the legal limit for non-commercial drivers. At that rate, you could be considered over the limit after drinking a single beer.
If you’re a school bus driver, that single beer will land you in the State’s High Impairment tier. School bus drivers with a BAC of .02 are automatically bumped up a category and face stiffer penalties. For other CDL license holders, a BAC of .04 – or about two beers – will put you in the High Impairment category.
And you don’t even have to be on the job for these standard to apply. CDL drivers can be held and charged in the High Impairment tier even while off-duty, or in their personal vehicles.
As you can see, the laws for CDL drivers in PA are quite strict. And the penalties are similarly harsh.
Pennsylvania CDL DUI Penalties
A first offense CDL DUI conviction in Pennsylvania will bring you a 12 month license suspension, fines from $500 to $5,000, and a jail term ranging from two days to six months.
For a second offense, license suspension remains at 12 months, but fines increase from $750 to $5,000, and jail time increases to anywhere from one to six months.
At the Highest Impairment category (BAC of 1.6 or higher), license suspension can increase to 18 months, fines can increase up to $10,000, and jail time can increase up to five years.
And these are just the punishments from the Commonwealth. CDL drivers convicted of DUI often see dramatic increases in their insurance rates – both personally and professionally, and are often dropped outright by both insurers and employers.
Know Your Rights
Don’t let this happen you. You need to hire an experienced DUI attorney who will fight aggressively for your case. The DUI lawyers at The McShane Firm are among the most highly-trained DUI attorneys in Pennsylvania, and we’re ready to help. Contact us for your free initial consultation today and get back on the road tomorrow. It could be the best career move you’ll ever make.