Truck drivers are an integral part of the commerce system in the United States, and if you hold a commercial driver’s license (CDL), then you make up a majority of drivers on the road today. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, there are 3.2 million CDL drivers on the road today. Many drivers take on additional commercial-hauling responsibilities and run the risk of receiving driving violations as they travel from state to state. These penalties can have dire consequences for CDL truck drivers.
Each state has their criteria when it comes to assessing points for moving violations. In some states, driving just 15 miles over the speed limit is considered a costly moving violation and considered a misdemeanor. Obeying the general rules of the road for every state will give you more of an opportunity to avoid moving violations that lead to license points.
CDL suspension or revocation
The loss of CDL status can occur based on too many moving violation points and the type of violation. These can include reckless driving, leaving an accident scene, and even driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Also, if you defend a moving violation in court, it is not necessarily expunged from your driving record. So, multiple moving violations can lead to a driving record that will merit losing your status as a CDL driver. In the state of California, receiving 4 points on a CDL within 12 months results in license suspension.
Once a moving violation occurs, you will more than likely have to pay some fine imposed by the state where it was received. If the offense is severe enough that it results in a revocation of your CDL status altogether, then it will lead to costly license reinstatement fees to resume driving.
Insurance rate hike
The expenses to a CDL driver goes up each year. As of 2018, the amount per mile to operate a commercial truck went up 6% to $1.69 per mile. Included in this expense is the cost of insurance. Adding moving violations into an already expensive equation, insurance rates for you can double and even triple from one year to the next, leading to unnecessary financial hardships.
Loss of employment
Moving violations are usually part of a permanent record for each state; you can’t hide them from your employer. They may have their standards when it comes to the number of moving violations you are allowed to have either in a specific time frame or based on the number of points. Whatever the circumstances that arise, it can lead to either a temporary loss of employment or being fired from your employer.
It is important to consider all the consequences of receiving a moving violation of any kind when you hold a commercial driving license. Any CDL driver can jeopardize their finances, CDL license and even their livelihood with each moving violation. Considering the consequences of a moving violation is the best alternative to receiving one.