New federal Entry-Level Driver Training requirements have been in effect since February, establishing a national standard for obtaining a commercial driver’s license.
However, it is important to note that the revised ELDT regulations apply only to drivers seeking to:
- Obtain a CDL for the first time.
- Upgrade their existing CDL from Class B to Class A.
- Obtain a new hazmat, passenger or school bus endorsement.
Current CDL holders – unless seeking a change in CDL classification – are not by default affected.
First authorized by Congress in 2012, ELDT requires new drivers or drivers seeking a classification change to pass both a theory and knowledge test as well as a roads and skills test. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association estimates that 85 percent of entry-level drivers already receive training that meet the ELDT requirements, which do not set minimum training hours nor require truck driver training school. New drivers can continue to receive training from educational institutions, fellow motor carriers, rural cooperatives and other venues.