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Bay Area Criminal Defense Blog

DUIs for Commercial Drivers Are a Big Deal

Posted by Lynn Gorelick | Dec 18, 2015 | 0 Comments

For anyone charged with driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, a DUI conviction can be a life-changing event. Not only will they have to deal with the high cost of a DUI, adding up all the fines, fees, higher insurance rates and paying for an IID or DUI school, they may also face jail time if the DUI resulted in an accident. However, commercial drivers with Class A or Class B licenses face greater penalties, and risk losing their livelihood after a DUI.

All across the western states, truck drivers have been caught drinking and driving, putting their future at risk. Just last week a truck driver in Colorado found his truck wedged between a construction wall and the bridge support of a freeway overpass of Interstate 225 off East Alameda Boulevard. A number of tow trucks were needed to pull the truck out, and the driver ended up going to jail arrested on suspicion of a DUI.

Professional drivers spend their workday on the road behind the wheel of multi-ton vehicles speeding down the highway. This is one of the reasons commercial drivers are held to a higher standard when it comes to drinking and driving. Any driver can get a DUI with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher. However, commercial drivers can be arrested for a DUI with a BAC of only 0.04% or greater when operating their commercial vehicles. If they get a second DUI, they may lose their commercial driver's license for good.

A truck driver in Montana may not have learned from his first three DUIs. Pete Stewart Jr. was arrested at a weigh station off I-90 on suspicion of a DUI. An officer at the Department of Transportation reportedly smelled alcohol on the driver's breath. The professional truck driver tested just over the legal limit for commercial drivers at 0.042%. The driver was required to wear an electronic alcohol monitoring device in order to continue working as a truck driver.

Another Montana truck driver was arrested for a DUI despite six prior DUI arrests. After a highway patrol officer pulled the truck over, the driver's breath tested at 0.135% BAC. He now faces a felony DUI, and will be required to wear an alcohol monitoring device.

An Arizona truck driver alerted the attention of police when they saw his semi-truck driving erratically on Highway 89, including swerving into the lanes of oncoming traffic. When they pulled over the truck, the driver smelled of alcohol and was later tested with a BAC of 0.245%, three times the legal limit for a regular driver, and six times the limit for a commercial driver.

At the Gorelick Law Offices, attorney Lynn Gorelick has dedicated her legal career to defending drivers charged with a DUI in the East Bay. With more than 30 years of experience, Lynn Gorelick understands how a DUI conviction can affect your future, possibly your job, and how to fight to keep a conviction off your record. If you are a commercial driver facing a DUI, contact the local East Bay DUI defense attorney who understands that you do not have to plead guilty just because you were arrested.

About the Author

Lynn Gorelick

Lynn Gorelick has been an attorney for over 38 years. She is the Attorney Lynn Gorelick is the Immediate Past President of the California DUI Lawyers Association and a Faculty and Sustaining member of the National College of DUI Defense. Lynn is a Specialist Member of the California DUI Lawyers Association and lectures frequently to other attorneys regarding DUI and DMV issues.


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