Protecting your CDL and your financial future
The Texas Department of Transportation estimates that every 20 minutes, someone in Texas is injured or killed in a car accident involving alcohol. Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a serious offense with stiff penalties. For those Texas drivers with a commercial driver’s license (CDL), the consequence of a DWI is even harsher as it can affect your ability to earn a living. The experienced Texas DWI attorneys at the Law Office of Kyle Whitaker located in Fort Worth and Southlake Texas understand your rights in these situations and advocate on your behalf for the best possible solution.
Commercial driver’s license (CDL)
When it comes to impaired driving, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has established higher standards for individuals operating with a commercial driver’s license (CDL). If driver is impaired, the threat to public safety is significantly greater for someone driving a fuel truck or school bus than it is for someone operating a standard personal vehicle.
Blood alcohol concentration and CDL
The state of Texas, like many other states, has adopted FMCSA regulations concerning alcohol limits and commercial drivers. The blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit for commercial drivers in Texas is 0.04%, half of the limit for non-commercial drivers in the state. FMCA regulations also state that commercial drivers may not operate a commercial vehicle within four hours of consuming alcohol.
Those individuals holding a commercial driver’s license in Texas have already given consent to submit to testing when they receive a driver’s license. Testing may be in the form of a breathalyzer, blood test, urine test, or other test to determine mental and physical impairment.
Refusing the test
Police officers cannot require that you submit to blood alcohol testing, even though you have already given your consent. However, there are penalties for refusing. Drivers who refuse to submit to blood alcohol tests while operating a commercial motor vehicle will lose their commercial driver’s license for one year.
DWI Conviction and Commercial Driver Licenses
Under Texas law, if the holder of the commercial driver license (CDL) has been convicted of a DWI, the penalties are as follows:
- Drivers with a DWI conviction will be disqualified from operating a commercial vehicle for a period of at least one year
- Drivers who are convicted of DWI while operating a commercial motor vehicle placarded for hazardous materials will be disqualified for a minimum of three years for a first offense and lifetime disqualification for a second offense
If commercial drivers are charged with DWI while operating a personal vehicle, their commercial driver’s license will be suspended for one year.
Charged with commercial DWI? Contact our skilled Texas commercial DWI attorneys today for guidance
A charge of DWI is serious and can have significant impact on your life going forward, particularly if driving a commercial vehicle is your livelihood. Whether you are facing a DWI charge from when you were operating your personal vehicle or a commercial vehicle, we can help. The skilled Texas commercial DWI defense lawyers at the Law Office of Kyle Whitaker in Fort Worth & Southlake are experienced and knowledgeable in DWI law, advocating for those accused, striving for the best possible outcome in each case. Contact a member of our team today at 817-332-7703 or contact us online to arrange for a confidential consultation.