Facing DUI charges is a frightening experience for any Oklahoma driver. Potential penalties include a suspended license, steep fines, jail time and more.

However, for drivers with an Oklahoma commercial driver’s license (CDL), the stakes can be much higher, whether you face DUI charges after driving your commercial vehicle or your personal vehicle. A DUI can lead to serious consequences and risk your ability to make a living. After an arrest, what do you need to know about a DUI?

The risks of losing your CDL

Oklahoma’s Department of Public Safety states that CDL holders may face a suspension of their driving privileges for one year for the following alcohol-related offenses:

  • Driving or being APC in a commercial motor vehicle. When your blood alcohol content (BAC) level is .04% or more, you could face the suspension of your CDL for one year or more.
  • Refusing to consent to a BAC test. Due to implied consent laws, which state that drivers consent to taking chemical tests by using state roads, refusing a breath or blood test can lead to a suspension.
  • Driving or being APC in a personal vehicle. Even if you receive a DUI after driving your car, motorcycle or more while off the clock, you may face the suspension of your CDL.

In Oklahoma, drivers do not need to operate their vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or other substances to receive a DUI. Simply being in a parked vehicle while intoxicated can lead to charges for actual physical control (APC) or a non-driving DUI.

Drivers are held to a stricter standard

Most states, including Oklahoma, impose a BAC limit of .08% on drivers. However, CDL holders can face charges with a BAC level of just .04%. While other drivers may be able to apply for a restricted permit to get to work or school during their license suspension period, without your CDL, you may lose your ability to do your job. Employers cannot continue to employ drivers in driving-focused positions during the suspension period.

A DUI conviction can complicate your current and future employment options. Understand the risks of a DUI in Oklahoma and seek legal assistance to minimize the potential penalties you face after an arrest.