Imagine the bustling streets of New York during rush hour. Taxis are everywhere. Large trucks dot the landscape. There are delivery trucks zipping about. Private motor carriers are taking people to and fro.

All of these vehicles that we just referenced are examples of commercial vehicles, which require the driver to have a commercial driver’s license. And all of the driver’s of these commercial vehicles are subject to a special DUI law that is far more strict than the “regular” DUI law of 0.08. Commercial DUI laws kick in with a blood alcohol content of 0.04, and their consequences can be even harsher for a commercial driver than a non-commercial driver.

For example, in addition to the actual DUI case that any person would face after driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, an individual with a commercial driver’s license would also likely lose their job, at least temporarily if not permanently. They could also be subject to a longer license suspension than normal.

Those who hold a commercial driver’s license can also feel the sting of a DUI on their career even if they don’t get a DUI while on the job. If they get a DUI while in their personal vehicle, they must notify their employer — and since the DUI is almost certain to lead to a suspension of their regular driver’s license, that also means that their employer is banned from using them while their license is revoked.

The stakes are very high for commercial drivers when it comes to drunk driving violations, and they need to legally protect themselves in the wake of such a charge as a result.

Source: FindLaw, “Commercial DUI Regulations,” Accessed April 10, 2015