The most common traffic ticket for commercial driver’s license (CDL) holders is speeding in a commercial vehicle, as it is for all drivers. However, speeding in a personal vehicle usually does not carry the weight of a commercial speeding ticket.
When you are ticketed for speeding in a commercial vehicle, you usually have no choice but to challenge the speeding ticket in court with a traffic attorney. Not only do you face massive fines and possible jail time in CA, but you face severe sanctions from the DOT FMCSA for speeding in a commercial vehicle.
Your Speeding in a Commercial Vehicle Could Be a Misdemeanor Offense
According to CA Vehicle Code (CVC) Section 22406, Speed Laws, all commercial vehicles with three or more axles are prohibited from driving above 55 mph across the state. That also includes U-Hauls, Riders, other rentals, and vehicles towing another vehicle.
But then, CVC 22406.1, Other Speed Laws, explicitly states in paragraph (a), “A person who operates a commercial motor vehicle…upon a highway at a speed exceeding a posted speed limit established under this code by 15 miles per hour or more, is guilty of a misdemeanor.”
That includes a stay in the county jail, probation or a fine of up to $1,000 plus the added penalties, fees and surcharges added to the fine for such things as court construction, DNA testing and more, which could bring your fine to $3,000 or more. DOT’s FMCSA system could add even more consequences. The problem is that it is not considered “double jeopardy” for state and federal agencies to fine you for the same traffic offense.
The DOT FMCSA Considers 15+ MPH over the 55 MPH Speed Limit a “Serious Offense”
How much do you think it would cost you if you could not drive for two months? Much more than $3000, right? If you are convicted of speeding 15+ mph over the 55 mph limit twice, the FMCSA will consider you as a disqualified driver in accordance with FMCSA CFR 49 Part 383.51, Driver Disqualifications. This disqualification is for 60-days for a second conviction of speeding 15+ mph over within three years of the first offense, and a third time will warrant a 120-day suspension.
However, if you get convicted for speeding in a construction zone, it doesn’t matter to the FMCSA how fast you were going, it is a serious offense. Therefore, if one was in a construction zone and one for more than 15 mph over, you’ll still get disqualified. Although, you can get a lawyer and fight it at the state level where your CDL was issued.
It is doubtful that you will get to a second conviction of a 15+ mph over the limit if you drive for a fleet. Most fleet managers have a zero moving violation policy and will terminate you after one conviction for speeding in a commercial vehicle, whether it’s a serious offense or not. CDL holders must always consult a traffic attorney about their traffic tickets. You can’t afford to chance paying it or challenging it yourself even if you could take time off to wait for your turn in traffic court.
Fight Your Speeding in a Commercial Vehicle Ticket with a CA Traffic Attorney
In Woodland Traffic Court in Yolo County, California, if you receive a speeding in a commercial vehicle ticket on I-5, call Bigger & Harman, (661) 349-9300. Se habla Español (661) 349-9755.
Make no mistake about it; hiring a traffic attorney who charges a flat fee to resolve your traffic ticket just makes good financial sense. You can keep driving while we resolve your ticket in traffic court. We can’t always get a dismissal, but we might get a reduced no-point conviction that equates to an expensive parking ticket. Give us a call.
The 2019-2021 CA Commercial Driver Handbook.pdf
The FMCSA CFR 49 Part 383.51, Driver DisqualificationsCVC Section 22406 & CVC 22406.1