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How Driving in a Personal Vehicle Affects Your CDL

After you come home from a haul, there’s a good chance you’ll be driving your personal vehicle for one reason or another. Whether you’re driving your kids around, going out to meet your friends, or simply running errands, your actions have the potential to affect your commercial driver’s license (CDL).

Although you do not have to follow all the same regulations you do when driving a commercial vehicle, you do still have a responsibility to drive safely, as does everyone on the road. Additionally, certain types of traffic violations or offenses can result in a license suspension or even disqualify you from holding a CDL.

CDL Suspensions and Disqualifications

Having two serious traffic violations in three years will result in your CDL being revoked for 60 days. Three serious violations in this amount of time will result in a revocation of 120 days. For the most part, the revocation only applies when these violations are committed while driving a commercial vehicle. However, some states have different moving violations that could qualify, even if you are in a personal vehicle.

Additionally, some offenses will result in a CDL suspension or disqualification whether you are in a commercial or personal motor vehicle. One of these is driving under the influence (DUI). A first-offense DUI will result in a CDL suspension of one year, and any subsequent offenses will result in a lifetime disqualification. Other serious offenses that fall under this category include unlawfully refusing a DUI test, leaving the scene of an accident, or using your vehicle to commit a felony.

State License Suspension

Many states have a demerit system, which assigns a certain number of “points” to any traffic violations. Even if an incident does not meet the qualifications to affect your CDL directly, your personal and commercial driving privileges could still be suspended.

Any citations you get will remain on your motor vehicle record (MVR) for seven years. Trucking companies are required to check your MVR before hiring you and to continue to check it regularly during your employment. This means that even if your license is not suspended due to traffic violations, they will appear on your MVR and could affect your employment depending on the specific policy at your current or future employer.

Most motor carriers have a policy in place requiring you to report any citations or accidents to them, even if these occur in your personal vehicle outside of the scope of your work. It’s important that you know and follow this policy at all times to avoid any issues. Additionally, never lie on applications for new trucking jobs. If your MVR does not match what you report on your application or during your interview, you likely will not get the job.

We Are Hiring Safe Drivers

If you are a safer driver with a CDL, DSW is currently hiring for regional and over-the-road routes. We offer competitive pay, excellent benefits, and the best home time around.

Contact us today to learn more about our available truck driving jobs based in Tucson.
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