A CDL (commercial driver’s license), is a major requirement for people who would like to join the transportation industry as bus, truck drivers or any other commercial vehicles. Acquiring a CDL is a lifetime investment of experience and energy. Holding a CDL is a clear proof that you are capable of performing tasks that not everyone else can. You are able to operate vehicles that are limited to regular drivers.
However, that does not mean that getting one is simple. It involves a lot of reading and hard work. Anyone applying for a commercial driver license is required to have an operator’s license, pass all the vision tests and have a minimum age of 18 years. To get a CDL, you will also be expected to verify with the Department of Motor vehicles (DMV) that you meet all the necessary requirements in the state you reside. After filling out your CDL application, a knowledge test to determine your understanding of the laws and regulations for working with commercial vehicles will be given. After you have qualified in the test, you will also be expected to take a driving test where you will operate a commercial vehicle with an assessor.
Wondering how to get cdl license fast? Follow these steps to get your CDL license.
Confirm the required fee amount for applying for a CDL
A lot of states will always require that you pay a certain amount of fee for you to acquire a CDL. This may include fee for the driving skills and knowledge tests and the application fee for the CDL. It’s important that you check with your local DMV website to establish the precise amount of fees you will have to pay before you can get a CDL.
Read and understand the CDL handbook/training guide
This training guide book contains a lot of information that will come in handy when sitting for the knowledge test. You can download the CDL handbook from your states DMV website or pick it from their offices.
Fill in the application for CDL
Collect a CDL application form from your local DMV office or download and print it from their website. The application for the CDL requires that you fill in your personal details and give the information of the vehicle you intend to be driving. After you have correctly filled in the CDL application, you must personally take it to your local DMV office. You will also be expected to sit for your CDL knowledge test when you present your application.
Operate a commercial vehicle with a CLP (Commercial Learners Permit)
When you pass the knowledge test, you will be issued with a learner’s permit that lets you practice driving a commercial vehicle up to when you can take the test. Different states have restrictions for people operating vehicles with a learners permit. Often, you will have to be accompanied by another driver with a CDL who sits next to you. Passing the knowledge test does not guarantee a learners permit. Your driving record for the last 10 years is thoroughly scrutinized in all the major states. You will also need to provide proof that your state accepts that you are medically fit. A lot of commercial driving demands a DOT medical card that requires a DOT physical. Depending on your state, you may be requested to provide further proof of residency and name.
Book an appointment for taking the CDL driving skills test
After you get confident driving commercial vehicles, you can book for a CDL driving test. Check with your DMV local offices on what is required to book the driving skills test. There are some states that will let you book an appointment online, while others may require that you call some months before to book the exam.
Go for your driving skills test appointment with the commercial vehicle you intend to be driving
There are different categories for a CDL depending on the type of vehicle you intend to be driving. Ensure you go with the type of commercial vehicle you will be driving. For example, if you plan to be driving trucks, then go for your driving skills test with a truck. However, you must have being in possession of the CLP for 14 days and more, before you can take the skills test. Additionally, there are states that will require you to successfully complete CDL training before testing. There are states that let you use their “training aid” to assist you recall items that are on the vehicle inspection checklist. Taking this test does not guarantee that you will pass.
Receive your CDL
After you have passed all the tests, you will have to take the documentation for processing to the counter. An examiner will provide you with your CDL. Often, you will be given an interim CDL to use as you wait for your official commercial drivers license to arrive through mail.
Here are some useful links that may help you when looking for a CDL license