When you have your commercial driver's license in Tennessee, you will need to pay special attention to the laws and rules of the road. You will be held to a higher standard and will be expected to adhere to the laws you have agreed to before you can hit the road. Make sure to know what type of license you will need and that you have all of the applicable endorsements on your license. Whether driving a bus or a truck with a trailer, you need to know the laws and have the proper license.
Getting your CDL in Tennessee
In Tennessee there are certain requirements that need to be met in order to get a CDL. The first of these is age. In order to get a Class C you need to be at least 21, for a B you need to be at least 19 with restrictions, and for a Class A CDL you can be 18 as long as you do not make any trips over 100 miles. You will also need to prove you are a citizen and a resident of Tennessee. This is done through forms of identification as well as copies of your Social Security number and verification. You will also need to pass a written and physical test to get your license. You need to have at least 20/40 vision to be able to apply for the exam. You will need to pass a skills test to be able to qualify.
Moving Violations with your CDL
If you commit a moving violation in Tennessee while you are using your CDL, you will face a different level of charges and ticketing then you would with a traditional license. There are different point values you will receive on your license for different violations. The traditional failure to stop and red light violations will all result in three points on your license. If you fail to stop at a railroad crossing, that is worth eight points. Speeding in most cases is a four-point violation. If you accumulate 12 or more points in a period of two years, you will face a one year suspension of your license. You will face varying fines for the different violations depending on the area in which the violation occurred.
Specific CDL Violations
When you have a CDL there are violations you will need to pay specific attention to. Here are some of those and what you will face. You will face fines and possible suspension of driving privileges if you are found to have an inaccurate logbook. If you are driving a vehicle that is overweight for the road, or you are not obeying grade and braking laws, you will face various fines and penalties depending on the amount of weight, as well as fines as determined by the designated area in which the violation occurred.
DUI Violations while Holding a CDL in Tennessee
If you are found to have a blood alcohol content that is .04 or above while driving a commercial vehicle in Tennessee, you will have your license suspended for one year. If this is to occur for a second time, you will face a lifetime loss of your CDL. If this is to occur while driving hazardous chemicals, you will face an automatic three-year suspension of your CDL. You may also face jail time and various other fines. In many cases you will face the same punishments as those who drive a regular vehicle and are convicted of DUI, meaning a misdemeanor and up to two years in jail for a first offense. Even if your violations occur out of state, Tennessee will enforce the punishment that the state dictates for you in regards to the loss of CDL, fines and jail time.
Contact an Attorney
No matter what happens with traffic violations and your commercial driver's license in Tennessee, you will need to consult an attorney. They will be able to assist you in getting fines reduced as well as a possible reduction in charges. They can also tell you how to plead, whether it is guilty or not guilty in regards to your charges.