What Are the Main Types of CDL Licenses?

Do you dream of driving the big rigs down to Florida for a nice holiday weekend? Or, perhaps you envision yourself working for a big construction company driving their fancy machines? Well, you’ll need to prepare yourself first.

Getting your CDL or commercial driving license can be quite the process. However, when you’re able to pass your exams, it’s a dream come true.

Keep reading to learn about all the different types of CDL licenses so you can determine which one you want to go for. Let’s get started!

Class A Commercial Driving License

Class A CDL holders can operate any combination of vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 26,001 pounds or more, provided the vehicle being towed has a GVWR of 10,001 or more pounds.

Class A licensees may also operate vehicles designed to transport 16 or more passengers, including the driver. These licenses are for tractor-trailers or those in the truck driving industry.

In addition, a Class A license holder may be able to drive a Class B vehicle but not vice versa.

Class B CDL

Class B CDLs are less common and allow you to operate any vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds. This also applies to any vehicle towing a trailer with a GVWR of 10,000 or fewer pounds.

Additionally, Class B licensees may also operate vehicles designed to transport 16 or more passengers, including the driver.

Class C License

Class C CDL holders can operate any single vehicle or combination of vehicles that is not a Class A or Class B vehicle. It is designed to transport 16 or more passengers, including the driver. Also, those who are transporting hazardous materials are included.

CDL Qualifications

A CDL license allows a person to operate a commercial motor vehicle. To qualify for a commercial driving license, applicants must pass a written test and a skills test.

The written test covers topics such as road signs, traffic laws, and weight limits. The skills test is a driving test that evaluates the applicant’s ability to safely operate a commercial vehicle.

Additionally, the physical exam requirement is that drivers must possess a DOT medical certificate to operate a CMV. The medical examiner must determine that the driver is physically qualified to operate a CMV.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has determined that individuals with certain medical conditions are not qualified to operate a CMV. Check out a DOT physical exam for more insights.

CDL Restrictions

CDL drivers have numerous restrictions. Some are related to the type of vehicle being driven, such as motorcycles, school buses, or hazardous materials trucks.

Other restrictions are based on the driver’s medical conditions, such as not being able to drive a tank vehicle if the driver has diabetes.

In addition, there are also general restrictions that apply to all CDL holders, such as not being able to drive with a blood alcohol concentration above 0.04%.

Guide to the Types of CDL Licenses

A commercial driver’s license is a must for anyone who wants to drive a commercial vehicle.

Applying for a CDL is a simple process. You can have to know the types of CDL licenses to know which best suit you. By taking a driving test and a written exam, you will be able to get a license from your state.

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