Driving under the influence (DUI) arrests often result in driver’s license suspensions that make it difficult for alleged offenders to get to and from work, but drunk driving charges are especially damaging for the drivers of commercial vehicles who can become completely unable to work at all without valid commercial driver’s licenses (CDLs). Because commercial vehicles are traditionally much larger than standard passenger vehicles and may also be carrying potentially hazardous materials, the people operating commercial vehicles are held to a much higher standard than their non-commercial counterparts.
When commercial drivers are arrested for DUI in Florida, they not only faces possible penalties that may include incarceration and fines, but convictions can have extremely damaging career consequences. Repeat DUI offenses—even those occurring in noncommercial vehicles—can result in people being permanently ineligible to operate commercial vehicles.
Lawyer for Commercial DUI Arrests in Brooksville, FL
If you are a commercial driver who was arrested for a drunk driving offense in Central Florida, it is in your best interest to retain legal counsel as soon as possible. The Law Office of Ashley Aulls, P.A. aggressively defends clients all over the greater Hernando County area, including Spring Hill, Brooksville, Weeki Wachee, and many other surrounding communities.
Brooksville criminal defense attorney Ashley Aulls comes from a family of legal professionals with decades of experience, and he fights to achieve the most favorable outcome for every person he represents. You can have our lawyer provide an honest and thorough evaluation of your case when you call (352) 593-4115 to set up your first consultation.
Florida Commercial Drunk Driving Information Center
- How are DUI cases different for commercial drivers?
- What are the consequences for commercial drivers convicted of DUI offenses?
- Where can I learn more about commercial DUI in Brooksville?
Commercial DUI Charges in Hernando County
The driver of a traditional passenger vehicle can be charged with DUI in Florida if he or she has a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or higher, but state law prohibits a person who has any alcohol in his or her body from driving or being in actual physical control of a commercial motor vehicle.
Under Florida Statute § 322.62, it is a moving violation for a motorist to drive or be in actual physical control of a commercial motor vehicle in Florida when that person has any alcohol in his or her body. Alleged offenders are immediately placed out-of-service for a period of 24 hours.
If the driver of a commercial vehicle has a BAC of 0.04 or higher, then he or she can be charged with DUI. This limit is only half of the standard used to prove intoxication in traditional drunk driving cases.
Florida Statute § 322.01(8) defines a commercial motor vehicle as any motor vehicle or motor vehicle combination used on the streets or highways, which:
- Has a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more;
- Is designed to transport more than 15 persons, including the driver; or
- Is transporting hazardous materials and is required to be placarded in accordance with Title 49, Part 172, Subpart F of the Code of Federal Regulations.
Commercial DUI Penalties in Brooksville
Commercial drivers who are convicted of DUI face many of the same penalties as drivers of traditional passenger vehicles. Possible consequences may include any combination of the following:
- Fine of up to $1,000;
- Up to six months in jail; and/or
- Mandatory completion of substance abuse education or treatment programs.
If a person is convicted of DUI while operating a commercial motor vehicle or the holder of a commercial driver license or commercial learner’s permit is convicted of DUI while operating a noncommercial motor vehicle, that person is disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle for one year. If an alleged offender is convicted twice of DUI while operating a commercial motor vehicle or the holder of a commercial driver license or commercial learner’s permit is convicted twice of DUI while operating a noncommercial motor vehicle, that person is permanently disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle.
It is important to understand that any refusal to submit to breath or blood tests will result in automatic DUI charges for commercial drivers. Additionally, Florida does not allow commercial drivers to obtain hardship licenses to operate commercial vehicles.
Florida Commercial DUI Resources
Florida Statute § 322.61 — View the full text of the state law governing disqualification from operating a commercial motor vehicle. Learn more about the specific violations that can lead to drivers being disqualified. Many drivers can be disqualified for violations that occur in noncommercial motor vehicles.
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) — The FMCSA is the United States Department of Transportation agency that is responsible for regulation of the trucking industry. On this website, you can learn more about the agency’s regulations, including civil penalties, exemptions, and petitions for reconsideration. You can also find answers to frequently asked questions.
The Law Office of Ashley Aulls, P.A. | Brooksville Commercial DUI Lawyer
Were you recently arrested in Central Florida for allegedly operating a commercial motor vehicle while intoxicated? Or are you concerned about the impact that a traditional passenger vehicle DUI arrest might have on your CDL? You will want to contact The Law Office of Ashley Aulls, P.A. as soon as possible.
Ashley Aulls is a criminal defense attorney in Brooksville who represents people accused of drunk driving offenses in communities throughout Hernando County, Citrus County, Sumter County, and Pasco County. Call (352) 593-4115 or complete an online contact form today to set up your initial consultation that will let our lawyer review your case and discuss all of your legal options.