A commercial driver’s license differs from a personal driver’s license in many ways. For one, when you are a commercial driver, you will often handle larger vehicles, heavier loads and longer distances than any personal driver will ever need to deal with. You may also be responsible for the lives of many others, such as bus drivers.
Thus, the laws governing CDLs are often much stricter. In fact, certain traffic violations can end up disqualifying you from a CDL.
The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles talks about the potential ways to end up disqualified from a CDL. These violations can potentially bar you from using your CDL for 60 days to several years.
First, you have major violations. These can result in up to one year or more of disqualification from commercial driving. You can get up to 3 years of disqualification for transporting hazardous materials at the time of any offense you commit. And if you have repeat convictions, then you could end up facing a lifetime disqualification.
Major violations can include failing to stop at the scene of an accident that caused death or injury, lying on your CDL application or using your vehicle to commit a felony. The use of alcohol or drugs when driving a commercial vehicle falls under this category, too.
Serious violations can get you 60 to 120 day disqualifications. They include things like texting while driving, exceeding the speed limit by 15 miles an hour or more, or driving a commercial vehicle without your CDL. Reckless driving also falls under this category.