People from all walks of life can, and do, get cited for DUI in Washington State. Teachers, doctors, plumbers, and construction workers are but just yet a few of the many professions impacted. But what about aviation professionals 9 (i.e. Pilots), how are they impacted by a DUI citation?
A drunk driving arrest does not necessarily mean a pilot will lose his pilot’s license, like it does for commercial drivers (i.e. truckers) and their commercial driver’s license. Pilots are required, however, to report an alcohol-related conviction, suspension, or revocation to the Federal Aviation Administration within 60 days. Federal regulations state that a pilot must follow an 8-hour “bottle to throttle” rule. What this means is that pilots must go 8 hours between having a drink and flying an airplane. Some airlines actually increase this time period and require a 12 hour break between a flight and the pilot’s last alcohol drink. The Federal regulations also state that a blood alcohol content of .04 (not .08, which is our state limit) is over the legal limit. While a pilot may not face immediate consequences for a DUI arrest or conviction regarding their pilot’s license, any failure to report DUI activity can result in the suspension or revocation of a pilot certificate. Pilots also face the prospect of paying a $250,000 fine and up to 5 years in prison if they are not truthful about a DUI.
If you or a loved one is accused of DUI, you should immediately consult with a qualified Seattle DUI Attorney. A qualified and respected Seattle DUI lawyer, among other things, can quite possibly save the aggrieved person thousands of dollars in court and insurance fees, the extent of loss of privilege to drive, and the amount of jail time to be served. We have said it before and will say it again, Washington DUI laws are far too complicated for any ol’ attorney to handle. Be smart and consult with a qualified and skilled Seattle DUI attorney when arrested for an alcohol and/or drug related DUI in Washington State.