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What to Do about Speeding in a Commercial Vehicle

undefinedA conviction for speeding in a commercial vehicle can lead to a suspension of driving privileges. What’s worse, for a commercial driver or commercial driver’s license (CDL) holder, the loss of driving privileges means they cannot earn a living as a driver. 

That means as a commercial driver, whether a truck, charter bus, limousine, or even Lyft or Uber driver, your CDL is your livelihood, and you must protect it vigorously. When you get a speeding ticket in your commercial vehicle or even in a private vehicle, you should consult a speeding ticket attorney who regularly handles speeding tickets in Kings County.

Many attorneys do not like practicing in the Hanford Traffic Court. Some find it intimidating. However, the Law Office of Bigger & Harman, APC, regularly represents truck drivers and other commercial vehicle drivers in Hanford with significant success. 

Bigger & Harman have developed an excellent system of preparing documents to request dismissal of I-5 speeding tickets, and when that fails, requesting reduced no-point tickets that might require the driver to pay the fine but without the negligent operator treatment system (NOTS) points that can threaten a commercial driver’s livelihood.

What Constitutes Speeding in a Commercial Vehicle 

CA Vehicle Code (CVC) Section 22406Speed Laws makes it an infraction to drive a commercial vehicle with three or more axles over 55 mph statewide. I-5 is a significant feeder for speeding tickets in Hanford Traffic Court. 

Speeding ticket fines are a substantial revenue source for Kings County, and commercial vehicles are an easy target for many CHP officers. The speed differential in CA is not well-known to most out-of-state commercial drivers, and since I-5 runs from the Canadian border to the border with Mexico, it is a major thoroughfare for commercial goods. 

What’s more, in CA, when you get convicted of a minor infraction in a commercial vehicle, you cannot opt to attend traffic violator’s school (TVS) to keep the conviction confidential as you would be able to do in a private vehicle. The DMV will assess 50 percent more NOTS points when convicted for speeding in a commercial vehicle than a private vehicle. 

Therefore, for speeding even two or three mph over, you cannot use TVS to hide the ticket from your insurance company or employer. Many fleet managers have a zero-defect mindset when it comes to moving violations in their commercial vehicles. 

Therefore, even one speeding violation conviction can lead to termination. It is one reason large trucking fleets (more than $30 million in revenue) had an 83 percent turnover rate for the first quarter of 2020. That figure represents a five percent increase from the final quarter of 2019. Smaller fleets had a nearly 73 percent turnover rate for the same period, a four-point drop.      

California NOTS for Commercial Vehicle Drivers

As mentioned above, a commercial driver will be assessed 1.5 NOTS points for the same violation they would receive one NOTS point for in their private vehicle and three-points for a two-point offense. 

Why is this crucial to commercial drivers or CDL holders? A three point violation would put a commercial driver on the verge of a driving privilege suspension. In CA, the DMV tracks NOTS points on a driver’s motor vehicle driving record (MVR) and notifies their employer of any violations using the Employer Pull Notice (EPB) Program. They also send notifications to the FMCSA Safety Measurement System (SMS) for assessment of Compliance, Safety, & Accountability (CSA) Scores.

Both the driver and the carrier will receive CSA points for a speeding ticket conviction. That is critical to the driver, in that, the CSA points go on the driver’s Pre-Employment Screening Program (PSP) record for three years, which employers are mandated to consult before hiring a driver.   

Consequently, not only does a speeding ticket conviction in a commercial vehicle directly affect your chances of termination, but it also makes it more challenging to get hired with another trucking firm. Instead, most fleet managers would hire a fresh trucking school graduate  than a driver with even one speeding ticket conviction. Thus, a commercial driver must consult and hire a traffic attorney to dispute their speeding ticket.  

Traffic Attorneys Who Handle Speeding in a Commercial Vehicle in Kings County, CA 

When you have a speeding ticket in Kings County, call Bigger & Harman, (661) 349-9300. Se habla Español (661) 349-9755.

We regularly assist commercial drivers with speeding tickets and other traffic issues in Hanford Traffic court. As driving is to commercial drivers, traffic law is to our firm. We choose not to practice other areas of criminal law to be more knowledgeable and experienced in traffic law to assist CA drivers better.

Ronnie A., of Anaheim commented on Yelp reviews“I'm a truck driver and highly recommend this firm. They were able to get my speeding ticket dismissed. My wife is a former court room clerk, and she was impressed with their behind the scenes knowledge of the court system. They were quick to respond and I was told that even if it wasn't dismissed, they would try and reduce to 0 points towards my driving record. It was well worth every dollar spent.”

Email: attorney@biggerharmanlaw.com

References:

The 2019 CA Commercial Driver Handbook.pdf

The trucking.com articleTurnover Rate at Large Truckload Carriers Jumped in First Quarter