Commercial Driver license (CDL) - Class A, class B and Class C

Commercial Driver license (CDL)  Class A, class B and Class C

This type of license is required to operate a vehicle with a gross vehicle weight rating of around 26,001 lbs or 11,793 kg. The class A, B and C refers to the weight of the vehicle. The General Knowledge test is required for any CDL. The driver will take the actual driving test in the vehicle that falls into the weight class for the vehicle they want and will be driving.

People who are 21 years old (or above) are allowed to apply for a Class A driver license and for any CDL with a hazardous materials endorsement.

The federal standard requires states to issue a Commercial Driving License to drivers according to the following license classifications:

Class A:

The age requirements for this kind of license are 18 years or above for intrastate and 21 years or above for interstate. It allows drivers to operate of all vehicles within classes B,C,D, and E with any proper endorsement(s) and any combination of vehicles with a GVWR (gross vehicle weight rating) of 26,001 lbs or more, provided that GVWR of the vehicle(s) being towed is in excess of 10, 000 lbs.
  • In case the pulling unit of the combination vehicle is 26,000 lbs or less, a restriction must be added to the license.
  • A vehicle won't be taken in consideration, if being towed has a GVWR of 10,000 lbs or less.
Class B - Heavy Straight Vehicle:

It is one of the most difficult of all licenses to obtain. A person must already have a C license to obtain a Class B license. Regarding the age requirements, he or she must be at least 18 years or above for intrastate and 21 years or above for interstate (It may vary by estate), and pass a second visual acuity examination and a road-skill test to upgrade from license class C to B. This type of license is valid for five years, but a new medical examination have to be submitted every two years for keeping an updated license.

The license class B allows the operation of any vehicle within Classes C, D, and E, with any proper endorsement plus any single vehicle with a GVWR (gross vehicle weight rating) of 26,001 lbs (or more). Drivers are not allowed to pull a trailing unit weighing over 10,000 lbs with a class B license (with a class A license, they can). This type of license will be also required to drive a single fire fighting vehicle; this specific type of license is known as "Restricted Class B Fire Fighter License".

With the purpose of this class, the straight vehicle is defined as being one that does not have a moveable joint in its frame between the seat driver and passenger compartment.

Class C- Light Vehicle:

The age requirements for this kind of license are 18 years or above in case of intrastate and 21 years or above for interstate. It allows drivers the operation of any vehicle within Classes D and E, with any proper endorsement, plus any single vehicle less than 26,001 lbs GVWR. It means that the license allows to drive any combination of vehicles (or single vehicle), that does not meet the definition of Class A/Class B, but is either designed to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver), or is placarded for hazardous materials.

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