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  • Writer's pictureBetter Truck Drivers for America

4 Main Ways Truck Drivers Lose Their CDL

Updated: Dec 3, 2021

Avoid these common mistakes to keep that CDL in your pocket. These simple tips will help keep you on the road and making money!

6 ways truck drivers can lose their CDL class A
Don't lose your CDL for something dumb

Whether you are looking to get your CDL or you are an experienced Semi-truck driver the last thing you want to do is lose your CDL. Avoid these common mistakes when it comes to truck driving so you can stay safe and profitable.

Make sure to share this article with your other truck driver friends to help make sure they don't make the same mistakes.

Tip #1 - Traffic Violations and Crimes

Several traffic violations will lead to losing your CDL. In my experience in the trucking industry, I saw far too many of these happen. Learning how to be a safe, patient, and professional driver will help avoid these.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has listed several ways that will make you lose your CDL. For more information on these articles please visit their website at

To summarize a few that will suspend or revoke your license:

  • Speeding 15mph or over the expected speed limit

  • Erratic lane changes

  • Following another vehicle too closely, in more than one instance

  • A traffic violation that is a result of a fatal or near-fatal accident

  • Driving a commercial motor vehicle without a CDL license

  • Driving a CMV without having the CDL license with them at the time of driving

  • Driving a wrong class or category of vehicle than what is permitted in the driver’s CDL

  • Driving recklessly

  • Driving distracted– texting or speaking to someone on the phone, eating while driving

  • Driving under the influence of alcohol

  • Driving under the influence of drugs

  • Using a vehicle to commit a crime

  • Driving a vehicle or a CMV while his/her CDL has been revoked

  • Negligence that leads to a CMV accident

  • Driver refusing a chemical test

  • Leaving an accident scene

Based on the severity and frequency of these violations will play a factor in them being suspended or revoked. For more information make sure you also talk to your driver manager so they can give you DOT resources and do a more in-depth study.

Tip #2 - Drinking and Driving

This is a big NO-NO whether you are driving a CMV or your regular car. Drinking and driving is dangerous. As truck drivers, it should never be common practice for us to go out after a hard day of work knowing we have to be in the truck before the sun comes up.

If you find yourself with a history of substance abuse then I suggest you find a great support system or even an online community to help you stay strong. It is hard being a truck driver but we are professionals. This means as semi-truck drivers we must be at our best.

"Don't be dumb." – Said by every truck driver everywhere

Tip #3 - Failing A Drug Test

I do not think this one even needs a description. Don't bother looking up, "How long do I have to wait so I don't fail a drug test." or "How do I pass a DOT drug test." Let me save you some time. You don't deserve to drive a truck if you are high. I care about my safety and the safety of others on the road. Go find a different career.

Tip #4 - Letting your License expire

Two things you should always be responsible for are knowing when your medcard and your license expire. Set reminders in your calendar, let your driver manage to know, and tell your wife (they remember everything).

Additional Information

In my years of experience I've realized that violations happen due to negligence. One of the biggest contributing factors is your health. Check out our other blog posts that discuss vitamins and sleep health.

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