19 Jun 20 Things You Need to Know About a CDL Speeding Ticket
20 Things You Need to Know About a CDL Speeding Ticket
As a CDL driver, then you should know that any mistake you make on the road becomes a serious problem. For a normal driver, a speeding ticket is straightforward – you pay a fine and attend classes if convicted as covered at ny-defense.com. For a CDL driver, however, a speeding ticket may be a lot costlier, as this article will look to elaborate.
Speeding tickets put your CDL and job at risk
Commercial drivers depend on keeping their CDL to earn a living and keep their jobs. Commercial drivers are at risk of losing their license for 60 days if they are convicted of two “serious traffic violations” within 3 years while operating a CMV. This includes any ticket for speeding 15 mph over the speed limit as discussed at ny-defense.com.
The convictions must be for two separate incidents
However, it is important to note that the convictions must be the result of two separate incidents. This means that if the two violations happen at the same time, the 60-day suspension will not be applied. For instance, if you are pulled over and the officer issues a ticket for speeding and another for an unsafe lane change, then this single traffic stop will only be counted as one serious traffic violation, not two.
3 serious traffic violations
If a commercial driver is convicted of 3 serious traffic violations in 3 years, the suspension will be increased to 120 days as per ny-defense.com. Therefore, if you caught once more being 15 mph over the limit, your suspension period will be doubled.
Across state lines
Since commercial driving frequently involves crossing state lines, it is important to note as a CDL holder that the suspensions mentioned in the above points apply whether the violations occur out-of-state as well as within New York State. Speeding tickets issued out of your state will follow you home.
Which other offenses are considered “serious traffic violations”?
Other than being 15+ mph over the limit, the following offenses are also considered serious traffic violations and will result in the same suspensions discussed:
Unsafe lane changes
Driving a commercial vehicle without a CDL
Traffic violations involving a fatal traffic accident, etc.
Will your employer wait until your suspension period ends?
If your CDL is disqualified for either 60 days or 120 days as outlined earlier, you will be out of commission, meaning that you won’t be able to drive any CMV, legally at least. Will your carrier wait for your disqualification period to end before terminating you? Most likely not, which is why it is important to hire a CDL lawyer like ny-defense.com and fight your speeding ticket to avoid a conviction.
Can a company fire you for a CDL speeding ticket?
On a related note, it is important to explore if you can be fired over a speeding ticket. While state laws vary, for the most part, a private company can fire any commercial, TLC driver, or another person for whom driving a vehicle is a part of the job over a speeding ticket or other traffic violation. You may still end up getting fired even if your speeding ticket gets dismissed in court.
Should I notify my boss I got a speeding ticket?
According to ny-defense.com, a commercial driver is required by law to report any traffic convictions to his/her employer within 30 days.
You are not required to report the speeding ticket to your boss until you are convicted
While a commercial driver must report any traffic convictions to his/her employer within 30 days as required by law, the driver is not required to inform the employer of a speeding ticket until he/she has been convicted or pleads guilty (which happens when one pays a ticket without contesting it).
Should I report my speeding ticket before conviction?
Given that you are only required by law to report a speeding ticket after a conviction or a guilty plea, whether or not you should report the speeding ticket before a conviction will depend on several factors. These factors include company policy as well as the driver’s rapport with his/her superiors. Keep in mind that even if the ticket gets reduced or dismissed, most private employers can legally fire a driver over a traffic infraction.
Can CDL drivers take traffic school?
Attending traffic school is not likely to help commercial drivers avoid a suspension or revocation of the CDL from discussions over at ny-defense.com. In New York, a DMV-approved driving course will increase the point threshold needed for a suspension (it doesn’t actually eliminate the points). Like in most other states, in New York, traffic school can also help slightly reduce one’s personal (non-CDL) auto insurance rates.
Federal requirements and driving school
However, since federal CDL requirements look only at the number of convictions within 3 years, and traffic schools do not change or eliminate those convictions, it is not likely to help commercial drivers avoid a suspension of their CDL.
Points on your record
The DMV will also assess those convicted of speeding in a CMV demerit points as they would any other driver. In New York, the points associated with statute 1180(g), which is the statute specifically for vehicles that weigh 18,000 pounds or greater, are the same for regular speeding tickets as articulated at ny-defense.com.
How are the points assessed?
The points associated with the above-discussed statute are as follows:
1-10 mph over the speed limit = 3 points
11-20 mph over the speed limit = 4 points
21-30 mph over the speed limit = 6 points
31-40 mph over the speed limit = 8 points
40 mph + over the speed limit = 11 points and suspended license
How many points to suspend a CDL in New York?
CDL holders are subject to the same point system as other drivers in New York. This means that 11 points within 18 months can result in a suspension of a New York license.
What about drivers whose license is issued in another state?
As pointed out by ny-defense.com, drivers whose license is issued in another state can have their right to drive in New York suspended should they be convicted of 11 points-worth of traffic violations in 18 months.
Every interstate carrier with a U.S. DOT number receives a CSA score, regardless of what type of carrier it is. When a CDL driver is convicted of a traffic ticket, it increases the carrier’s CSA. This is true even if the company opts to terminate the drives over the infraction.
How are CSA points assessed?
There are three levels of CSA severity points assessed because of a conviction for a CDL speeding ticket as discussed at ny-defense.com, and they are:
10 points for speeding 15 mph or more over the limit or any speeding violation in a work/construction zone
7 points for speeding 11-14 mph over the limit
4 points for speeding 6-10 mph over the limit
Time weights and CSA points
Remember, time weights cause CSA severity points to get multiplied by three when the driver or carrier has another violation within the last 6 months, double with a violation within 6-12 months, and return to face value from 12-24 months.
How long does a speeding ticket stay on your CDL?
This is another question that many CDL holders ask, as it can impact their prospects of getting a job given employers will conduct background checks to see if you have a clean record. A speeding ticket conviction can count against a commercial driver for up to 3 years, even if the state in which one is ticketed drops it from the record sooner.
If you are caught speeding in a commercial vehicle, then you must hire an experienced CDL lawyer given what is at stake, from the suspension of your CDL to termination at work and other consequences, and ny-defense.com fits the bill perfectly.