As any truck driver knows, navigating everyday traffic in a large vehicle is fraught with danger and opportunities to pick up traffic tickets. Drivers have to be careful, as two serious traffic violations within just three years can result in a 60-day disqualification, and three violations in a three-year time frame equals 120 days off the job. Here are three traffic violations to watch out for as a CDL driver.
Speeding is the easiest infraction to acquire by accident, and it's also the one traffic lawyers for truck drivers have the hardest time fighting. It can take just a few seconds for your eyes to drift off the speedometer and onto something else, and if you're in the wrong place at the wrong time you may be staring down a speeding ticket that will affect your conditions of employment.
If you've ever driven with hazardous cargo like explosives, you know there are only a few routes you are allowed to take for the safety of yourself and those around you. Yet, it's incredibly easy to make an accidental wrong turn and wind up on a street or highway that violates the rules. The financial penalties for doing this stray into the hundreds of thousands of dollars, especially if you end up injuring anyone due to your misstep.
This issue is most obvious for those who drive a flatbed, but can happen to any CDL driver. Whether you're missing tie-downs or your load is otherwise unsecured, the consequences can be life-altering. Other scenarios in which you could get a ticket include problems with fire extinguishers or missing warning triangles where you need them. Even though it's technically the carrier's job to make sure these things are in order, it really falls to the driver to ensure all equipment is where it should be.
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