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undefinedSpeeding is only a minor infraction to many noncommercial drivers, but the stakes are much higher when it comes to commercial vehicle speeding. 

Our firm has represented countless commercial drivers, and through this blog post, we will share what you need to know about the crucial aspects of commercial vehicle speeding laws from a legal standpoint.

CA Vehicle Code (CVC) Sections 22406 & 22406.1 Describe Commercial Vehicle Speeding

These CVC sections offer explicit guidelines on commercial vehicle speeding. 

Sections 22406 and 22406.1Speed Laws, are instrumental to understanding these commercial vehicle speeding laws. They stipulate that certain commercial vehicles, given their size and the nature of their cargo, are not permitted to exceed specified speed limits, which are capped at 55 mph statewide.

These commercial vehicles include:

“(a) A motortruck or truck tractor having three or more axles or any motortruck or truck tractor drawing any other vehicle.

(b) A passenger vehicle or bus drawing any other vehicle.

(c) A school bus transporting any school pupil.

(d) A farm labor vehicle when transporting passengers.

(e) A vehicle transporting explosives.

(f) A trailer bus.”—CVC Section 22406Speed Laws.

Typically, the primary consideration is the number of axles. Vehicles with three or more axles are usually much heavier than two-axled vehicles. 

Therefore, an RV, pickup, or car pulling a trailer with an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) is subject to this speed limit differential and must adhere to the 55 mph max speed on CA roadways—even though they may not be, by definition, a commercial vehicle.

This distinction arises from the understanding that, given their weight and size, commercial vehicles can cause significantly more damage in the event of a collision. Therefore, these restrictions serve as a preventive measure to ensure the safety of the commercial driver and others on the road.

This usually becomes a problem when commercial vehicles cross from Nevada, Oregon, or Arizona, where they were allowed to drive 65 or even 75 mph with the other vehicles on the road. Driving 70 mph in a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) in CA is a misdemeanor crime for commercial drivers in their CMV.

Excessive Speeding in a CMV Is a Misdemeanor in CA & a Serious Offense at the FMCSA

One of the critical distinctions that we often emphasize to our clients is the gravity of commercial vehicle speeding in legal terms—especially what the FMCSA sees as “excessive speeding.” More on that later.  

In CA, excessive speeding in a CMV is not merely an infraction—it's classified as a misdemeanor by CVC Section 22406.1.

“(a) A person who operates a commercial motor vehicle, as defined in subdivision (b) of Section 15210, 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.”—CVC Section 22406.1Speed Laws.

This means the repercussions are more severe, including substantial fines, a criminal record, and potential jail time or probation.

Furthermore, at the federal level, the FMCSA categorizes excessive speeding—driving 15 mph or more over the speed limit for commercial drivers in a CMV as a serious offense. 

Also, any commercial vehicle speeding in a construction zone is likewise a serious offense, which could lead to a 60-day driver’s disqualification after a second conviction or 120 days after a third conviction within three years of the first. 

Such a categorization can lead to severe consequences for the driver, including potential disqualification from commercial driving for repeated violations. This underscores the importance of understanding and adhering to speed regulations when operating a CMV.

Commercial vehicle speeding convictions are assessed 1.5 negligent operator treatment system (NOTS) points for a minor infraction and stay on your driving record for three years. A major infraction, misdemeanor, or felony are assessed three NOTS points that stay on your record for seven to ten years.  

When You Get Ticketed for Commercial Vehicle Speeding, You Need Legal Representation to Resolve Your Ticket

When you become accustomed to driving 65 or 70 mph over long stretches of road, a sudden reduction to 55 mph speed limit catches many drivers off-guard. Therefore, many commercial drivers entering Riverside County, CA, from Phoenix heading to the Los Angeles or Long Beach Ports get caught speeding in their CMVs.

Whether it's an oversight, a misunderstanding, or an unexpected situation on the road, receiving a ticket for commercial vehicle speeding can be a stressful experience. We’ve handled many commercial speeding tickets in Riverside County and across CA.

We have a solid reputation of trust among both commercial drivers and traffic court judges. Therefore, we are able to get reduced no-point convictions and outright dismissals where other speeding lawyers might not even ask. 

Our extensive knowledge of commercial driving laws and experience in CA courts allow us to provide legal representation to commercial drivers facing speeding tickets. We can sometimes negotiate with traffic court judges to help you resolve your speeding ticket. 

Consult with Bigger & Harman, APC, about a Commercial Vehicle Speeding Ticket

We offer commercial drivers a free, no-obligation initial consultation by phone or email. Just send us a copy of your citation, and we’ll get back to you with the details. Additionally, we use a flat fee so that you’ll know exactly how much our fee is before you agree to our legal services.  

Call us at (661) 349-9300. Likewise, you can use the convenient contact form or email

Download our e-book, Protecting Your Commercial Driver License.

Se habla Español (661) 349-9755.


The DMV Portal CA Commercial Driver Handbook.

The FMCSA CFR 49 Part 383.51Driver Disqualifications.

CVC Sections 22406 & 22406.1Speed Laws.

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