Since 1991, Congress and the Department of Transportation (DOT) have sought to put forth a regulation that requires anyone seeking a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) to obtain formal training before taking the CDL skills test. After years of back and forth between the agency and the courts, Congress mandated the DOT to produce a regulation in 2012. In response, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) held a negotiated rulemaking in 2015. CVTA and 25 other industry leaders were chosen as participants in this negotiated rulemaking called the Entry-Level Driver Training Advisory Committee (ELDTAC). The negotiated rule produced by the ELDTAC served as the blueprint for the Final Rule, which was issued on December 8, 2016.
CVTA strongly supports the final rule because it requires training, sets forth a comprehensive classroom and behind the wheel curriculum, and requires individuals to demonstrate proficiency before sitting for the CDL exam. We believe this rule will enhance safety.
While FMCSA did not incorporate all of ELDTAC’s recommendations into its Final Rule, specifically an agreed upon minimum of 30-hours of required BTW training, CVTA believes this final rule will greatly enhance highway safety because the curriculum and demonstration of student skills performance far exceeds what most states currently require.
For far too long, substandard training providers (“CDL-Mills”) have been able to exist with little or no oversight. We believe this final rule is a good first step and will improve safety by required training.