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United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

Re-Assessment of Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) Holders’ Traffic Violations, Convictions, and Suspensions

Project Goal:

To determine the rates at which drivers are convicted of disqualifying offenses after receiving a traffic violation and appropriately disqualified after conviction at the State Driver's Licensing Agency, as well as determining rates of detection for disqualified drivers during roadside inspections in up to nine States.


Prior research has shown that drivers suspended for driving reasons are three times more likely to be in a crash than a person suspended for a non-driving reason, and six times more likely to be in a crash than a person who has never been suspended. Prior research also suggests that some CDL holders are not being properly disqualified for serious offenses. These drivers pose a serious safety risk and must be removed from the roadway.


The purpose of this project is to gain a better understanding of the disposition of violations. The study will track the issuance of violations for a serious offense (383.51) or other major traffic offenses that have been issued to a CDL driver. Violations will be tracked from issuance to prosecution, adjudication (conviction), transmittal to the applicable State Driver’s Licensing Agency (SDLA), and finally to disqualification (suspension).  


A report identifying the disposition of CDL holders’ major traffic violations from issuance to disqualification (when applicable).


Contractor is currently collecting data from States. Initial peer review is being planned for Dec/Jan time frame on two States.





June 2018: Complete "lessons learned" analysis from previous related research
July 2018: Kick-off meeting, finalized work plan due
October 2018: Document State processes
January 2019: Begin identifying potential status
June 2019: Begin collection data from participating status
September 2020: Initial peer review of analysis
July 2021: Draft report of findings
August 2021: Final peer review of findings
September 2021: Final report, research brief, and public-use dataset due


FY18 Funding: $401,000

FY20 Funding: $250,000


Project Manager:

For more information, contact Nicole Michel of the Research Division at (202) 366-4354 or



Last updated: Sunday, November 15, 2020