Can you lose your CDL for an accident?
Unfortunately, there is no simple answer to the question of whether you can lose your commercial driver’s license due to an accident. Every situation depends on the factors involved, including: how serious the accident was, if anyone was injured, whether or not you were at fault, how many points you currently have on your driving record, whether drugs or alcohol were involved, and more.
No matter what type of accident occurs, the police will determine who was at fault, and the insurance company and your employer will want to know this information. In addition to the usual procedures with police and insurance companies, many carriers have additional measures in place for drivers who are involved in an accident. Most require immediate drug and alcohol testing. If you are tested and the results show drugs or alcohol in your system at the time of the accident, you will have your CDL suspended – which means you will also lose your job. The length of time your license is suspended depends on the state in which the accident occurred, the state where your license was issued (if different), if you have any prior convictions, and the details involved in the accident. Each state has different laws regarding DUI convictions for commercial drivers. Other offenses that will cause you to lose your license are vehicular manslaughter and leaving the scene of an accident.
If the accident was minor and you have a good driving history, it is likely you will be able to keep your license and your job. All accidents affect your driving record and number of points, so be aware that even a minor accident becomes a part of your driving history for at least 7 years and could be the cause of the suspension of your license if you have a second incident within three years.