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Common Traffic Violations for CDL Holders

A commercial driver's license (CDL) is a specialized license required for individuals who operate large vehicles such as trucks, buses, and tractor-trailers for commercial purposes. State authorities issue the CDL, which signifies that the holder has undergone specific training and testing to operate commercial vehicles safely. CDL classifications vary based on the type of vehicle and cargo being transported, with endorsements indicating additional qualifications for specialized tasks such as transporting hazardous materials or passengers.

For CDL holders, strict adherence to traffic laws is paramount. Traffic violations jeopardize road safety and can severely affect the driver’s employment and finances. Convictions for traffic violations can result in fines, points on driving records, driver’s license suspensions, and even disqualification from holding a CDL.

Given the stakes, hiring an experienced traffic ticket attorney is crucial for CDL holders accused of violations. A lawyer can provide valuable legal guidance and representation to navigate the complexities of the legal system. They can explore potential defenses, negotiate with prosecutors, and advocate for reduced charges or dismissals. With an attorney’s insights, CDL holders stand a better chance of minimizing the impact of traffic violations on their driving record and livelihood.

At Martin A. Kron & Associates, P.C., we understand the challenges CDL holders face when dealing with traffic violations. Contact our New York team at (212) 235-1525.

Types of Violations CDL Holders Get Cited For

CDL holders are subject to many traffic laws and regulations while operating commercial vehicles. Unfortunately, even the most seasoned drivers may face citations for various violations.

In this section, we delve into the common traffic violations encountered by CDL drivers, offering valuable insights and strategies to mitigate risks and maintain compliance with the law.

Speeding Tickets

Speeding tickets pose significant risks for CDL holders, as they can result in fines, points on driving records, and potential repercussions on employment.

CDL drivers should adopt proactive strategies to avoid such infractions, including:

  • Adhering to posted speed limits
  • Using cruise control when feasible
  • Maintaining a safe driving distance from other vehicles

Failure to Use Turn Signals

Failure to use turn signals is a common violation that can lead to accidents and citations for CDL drivers. To mitigate this risk, it's essential for CDL holders to consistently use turn signals well in advance of making any turns or lane changes. Additionally, conducting routine checks to ensure turn signals are functioning properly can help prevent potential infractions.

Following Too Closely (Tailgating)

Following too closely poses significant safety hazards for CDL drivers, as commercial vehicles require longer stopping distances. CDL holders should be aware of the risks of tailgating, including rear-end collisions and citations for reckless driving.

Practices such as the following can help avoid tailgating violations:

  • Maintaining a safe following distance
  • Adjusting driving speed according to road conditions
  • Anticipating potential hazards

Driving While Intoxicated

Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a severe offense for CDL holders. CDL drivers are held to a higher standard, with lower blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limits compared to non-commercial drivers. Preventive measures to avoid DUI charges include refraining from alcohol and drug use while operating commercial vehicles, knowing the legal limits, and planning for alternative transportation options if necessary.

Strategies for Preventing Traffic Violations

CDL drivers shoulder immense responsibility while operating commercial vehicles. To uphold safety standards, preserve driving records, and safeguard their livelihood, they must implement preventive measures to avoid traffic violations.

The following tips offer actionable guidance to help CDL drivers navigate the roadways with confidence and compliance:

  • Regular vehicle maintenance and inspection: Conducting routine inspections, including checks of brakes, tires, lights, and fluid levels, helps identify and address potential issues before they escalate. CDL holders should adhere to scheduled maintenance intervals recommended by manufacturers and promptly address any mechanical issues.
  • Defensive driving techniques: CDL holders should practice techniques such as maintaining a safe following distance, scanning the road ahead for potential hazards, and anticipating potential risks to react swiftly and safely in challenging driving conditions.
  • Staying updated on traffic laws and regulations: CDL drivers should stay abreast of changes in speed limits, traffic signs, and regulatory requirements of commercial vehicles. Using state-specific driver handbooks, online courses, and professional associations can help CDL holders stay updated on relevant traffic laws and regulations.

Retaining Legal Representation

Given the significant ramifications of traffic violations for CDL holders, securing legal representation is paramount. Lawyers can provide invaluable guidance and advocacy to navigate hearings, challenge citations, and protect the rights and interests of CDL drivers. Whether facing speeding tickets, DUI charges, or other traffic violations, having legal counsel can make a crucial difference in the case outcome.

If you're a CDL holder in New York facing traffic violations or legal challenges, please get in touch with Martin A. Kron & Associates, P.C. at (212) 235-1525.

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