WHAT IS A CDL?
A Commercial Driver’s License or CDL is what the Department of Transportation requires all drivers to obtain before they’re able to drive trucks professionally.
There are three types of CDL which determine the commercial vehicles you’re able to drive
This is your standard CDL that lets you drive a semi-truck with a trailer in tow.
A Class B CDL is a restricted license as you are not allowed to drive large tractors that tow 10,000 pounds or more. This eliminates the ability to drive your standard 53’ trailer.
A Class C is the most unique type of CDL and for good reason. Besides being able to drive a shuttle bus or limo, there’s very little someone can do with a CDL C without the necessary endorsements. Even with those endorsements, most drivers consider it better to just go ahead and get your CDL B or A instead.
Have a valid social security
Have a valid non-commercial driver’s license
Be at least 18 years of age
Pass the skills, knowledge, and road test that your state administers
Drivers can earn any class of CDL at age 18, but can’t cross state lines until they’re 21, which bars them from most CDL A jobs.
CDL training usually lasts 6-8 weeks and includes classroom learning as well as behind-the-wheel training.
During training, students are expected to gain familiarity with operating a commercial vehicle and the techniques behind being a successful driver.
Classes will also cover a range of other helpful topics such on the road safety and first aid, state and federal laws drivers are subject to, route planning, managing logbooks, and more
Deciding which CDL program to enroll in is a big decision. But as long as you do your research and find the best school for you, you’ll be able to make an informed decision on which is right for you, and becoming a professional truck driver.