A Commercial Drivers License CDL Disqualification (loss of CDL driving privileges) applies to CDL holders or persons required to have a CDL if a driver is administratively determined to have committed or gets a conviction for certain crimes or traffic violations. A CDL Disqualification may be for 60 days, 120 days, 1 year, 3 years, or a lifetime, depending upon the violation. Drivers who are disqualified from operating a CMV cannot be issued a Probationary “Red” License or any other type of limited CDL license to continue driving a Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV). If a CDL holder is disqualified from operating a CMV, the State may issue the driver a license to operate a non-CMV if the driver is eligible for a non-CMV license in that state.
There are 5 categories of CDL Disqualifications under federal law, as follows:
|Commercial Drivers License CDL Disqualification – Felony Crimes|
Disqualification For Commission of Felony Crimes Using a CMV or non-CMV in the commission of a felony involving the manufacturing, distributing, or dispensing of a controlled substance will result in a CDL disqualification for life, without the possibility of reinstatement.
|Using a CMV or non-CMV in the commission of a felony involving the manufacturing, distributing, or dispensing of a controlled substance.|
|Commercial Drivers License CDL Disqualifications – Major Offenses|
The first violation for a Major Offense, in either a CMV or a non-CMV, results in a 1-year disqualification or a 3-year disqualification if transporting hazardous materials required to be placarded. The second violation for a Major Offense, in either a CMV or a non-CMV, results in a lifetime disqualification. The driver may be eligible for reinstatement of the CDL under certain conditions after 10 years.
|Being under the influence of alcohol as prescribed by State law.|
|Being under the influence of a controlled substance.|
|Having a B.A.C. of 0.04% or greater while operating a CMV.|
|Refusing to take an alcohol test as required by a State or jurisdiction under its implied consent laws or regulations.|
|Leaving the scene of an accident.|
|Using a vehicle to commit a felony.|
|Driving a CMV when, as a result of prior violations committed operating a CMV, the driver’s CDL is revoked, suspended, or cancelled, or the driver is disqualified from operating a CMV.|
|Causing a fatality through the negligent operation of a CMV, including but not limited to the crimes of motor vehicle manslaughter, homicide by motor vehicle and negligent homicide.|
|Using the vehicle in the commission of a felony involving manufacturing, distributing, or dispensing a controlled substance.|
|Commercial Drivers License CDL Disqualifications – Serious Offenses|
The first violation for a Serious Offense does not result in a disqualification. A second Serious Offense within 3 years will result in a 60-day disqualification, and a third Serious Offense within 3 years will result in a 120-day disqualification. Serious disqualifications must be served consecutively. All serious violations in a CMV are included. Serious violations in a non-CMV must not be included, unless it results in the revocation, cancellation, or suspension of the CDL holder’s license or non-CMV driving privileges.
|Speeding excessively, involving any speed of 15 m.p.h. or more above the posted speed limit.|
|Driving recklessly, as defined by State or local law or regulation, including but not limited to, offenses of driving a motor vehicle in willful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property.|
|Following the vehicle ahead too closely.|
|Violating State or local law relating to motor vehicle traffic control (other than a parking vio) arising in connection with a fatal accident.|
|Driving a CMV without obtaining a CDL.|
|Driving a CMV without a CDL in the driver’s possession.|
|Driving a CMV without the proper class of CDL and/or endorsements for the specific vehicle group being operated or for the passengers or type of cargo being transported.|
|CDL Disqualifications – Railroad Grade Crossing Violations|
The first violation of a Railroad Highway Grade Crossing (RRHGC) Violation results in a disqualification of not less than 60 days. A second violation within 3 years will result in a disqualification of not less than 120 days. A third and subsequent violation within 3 years will result in a disqualification of not less than 1 year.
|A RRHGC Violations occur when:|
|The driver is not required to always stop, but fails to slow down and check that tracks are clear of an approaching train.|
|The driver is not required to always stop, but fails to stop before reaching the crossing, if the tracks are not clear.|
|The driver is always required to stop, but fails to stop before driving onto the crossing.|
|The driver fails to have sufficient space to drive completely through the crossing without stopping.|
|The driver fails to obey a traffic control device or the directions of an enforcement official at the crossing.|
|The driver fails to negotiate a crossing because of insufficient undercarriage clearance.|
|CDL Disqualifications – Out-of-Service Order Violations|
There are two types of Out-of-Service Order (OOSO) Violations. Category 1 violations apply to a driver who was transporting placarded hazardous materials or operating a vehicle designed to transport 16 or more passengers. Category 2 violations apply to drivers not included in Category 1.
|Category 1 – Penalty: The first violation results in a disqualification of no less than 180 days or more than 2 years. The second and subsequent violations within 10 years, results in a disqualification of no less than 3 years or more than 5 years.|
|Category 2 – Penalty: The first violation results in a disqualification of no less than 180 days or more than 1 year. The second violation within 10 years, results in a disqualification of no less than 2 years or more than 5 years. The third and subsequent violations result in disqualifications of no less than 3 years or more than 5 years.|