Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is strictly forbidden in California. In order to control this activity, the state has set several limits for driver blood alcohol content (BAC). These limits include:
- 0.01% for Drivers Under 21
- 0.04% for Commercial Drivers
- 0.08% for Noncommercial Drivers Over 21
Commercial drivers with a high BAC could face criminal charges under California Vehicle Code Section 23152(d): Driving a Commercial Vehicle with a Blood Alcohol Content of 0.04 Percent or Higher. Find out more about the specific DUI laws for commercial drivers right here with the Simmrin Law Group.
Defining the Applications of VC 23152(d)
Drivers can be charged under VC 23152(d) if they operate a commercial vehicle with a BAC at or above 0.04%. The state of California defines commercial vehicles as:
Vehicles Requiring a “Class B” License to Operate
Drivers are required to have a “Class B” license to operate any vehicle that has a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) of at least 26,000 pounds. “Class B” licenses are also required to operate vehicles with 3-axles that weight at least 6,000 pounds.
Vehicles Requiring a “Class C” License to Operate (in Some Situations)
Drivers may operate some commercial vehicles with a “Class C” license if they have a commercial driver endorsement. These vehicles can include:
- School Buses and Passenger Vehicles that Hold Over Ten People
- Tank Vehicles and Vehicles Carrying Hazardous Substances
- Double Trailers and Some Farm Vehicles
Drivers should not be charged under VC 23152(d) if they are operating another vehicle, even if they have a commercial driver’s license.
Penalties for VC 23152(d) Convictions
The penalties for a VC 23152(d) can vary, depending upon whether it is a first-time DUI offense or a subsequent accusation. A commercial driver convicted of a single VC 23152(d) offense who does not hurt anyone could face:
- Up to Six Months of Jail Time
- Up to $1,000 in Fines
- Up to One Year Commercial License Suspension
A second DUI conviction can cause a driver to lose their commercial driver’s license for the rest of their life.
Additional DUI Charges in the State of California
Any driver that operates a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol can face DUI charges in California. This includes non-commercial drivers and drivers under the age of 21. There are many different charges used to prosecute DUIs, including:
- California Vehicle Code Section 23136: Under 21 DUI with Any Measurable Amount of Alcohol
- California Vehicle Code Section 23140: Under 21 DUI With Blood Alcohol Content Between 0.05-0.07 Percent
- California Vehicle Code Section 23152(a): Driving Under The Influence Of Alcohol
- California Vehicle Code Section 23152(b): Driving With A Blood Alcohol Content Of 0.08 Percent Or Higher
- California Vehicle Code Section 23152(c): Driving While Addicted
- California Vehicle Code Section 23152(f): Driving Under the Influence of Drugs
- California Vehicle Code Section 23153: DUI Causing Injury
All of these charges can result in fines and jail time. Drivers may have their licenses suspended or even revoked following a DUI conviction.
Defenses for Driving a Commercial Vehicle with a BAC of 0.04% or Higher
Your livelihood could be at stake if you are convicted of driving a commercial vehicle with a BAC of 0.4% or higher. You can get help protecting your future by contacting a criminal defense lawyer in Los Angeles as soon as you are arrested. A lawyer can work to build your defense by showing that:
Your BAC Results Were Inaccurate
Not all chemical tests return accurate results regarding a driver’s BAC. In fact, chemical tests can return false positives if a driver has certain medical conditions or is on certain diets. Improper testing methods can also lead to inaccurate results that could be disputed in court.
You Were Pulled Over Without Probable Cause
Police officers are not legally allowed to stop drivers without probable cause. They must have reason to believe you were operating your vehicle while under the influence to pull you over. If you were stopped without a good reason, your lawyer could get your VC 23152(d) charges dismissed.
A Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help You Handle VC 23152(d) Charges
Make sure you treat any California Vehicle Code Section 23152(d): Driving a Commercial Vehicle with a Blood Alcohol Content of 0.04 Percent or Higher charge seriously by getting professional help right away. You can call (310) 997-4688 or complete our online contact form to speak with the Simmrin Law Group.
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