When is a Class B Commercial Driver’s License Required?

When is a Class B Commercial Driver’s License Required?

There are 3 separate classes of license, when it comes to Commercial Driver’s Licenses (CDLs), each one having it’s own set of qualifications and specializations. Depending on the type of commercial vehicle that a driver will be operating, a specific class of license might be required.

Examples of Vehicles Requiring a Class B CDL

A driver that has obtained a class B CDL is capable of operating any vehicle that falls into the definitions required for a class B or C license. This includes vehicles that require a class C license, such as a passenger van, delivery van, a bus, or any vehicle weighing under 26,000 pounds that will be transporting more than 15 passengers. Typical vehicles that require a class B CDL include garbage trucks, tow trucks, utility vehicles, or any other single truck weighing more than 26,000 pounds and towing less than 10,000 pounds.

Obtaining a Class B CDL

In order to get a class B commercial driver’s license, the driver must first be eligible for a standard driver’s license in the state they will be employed. When driving a commercial vehicle across state lines, the driver will need to be at least 21 years of age. If a driver meets the requirements, they can then take the written commercial driver license test. This test is divided into 4 sections, covering general knowledge, pre-trip inspections, air brakes, and basic driving skills. After passing the test, the driver may obtain a permit. When driving a class B designated vehicle with a permit, another driver with a valid class B CDL must be present. Next comes the actual road test, where the practical skills are put to the test. Finally, the driver must pass a DOT physical exam, which is valid for a period of 24 months. With all these requirements met, the driver may purchase their class B commercial driver’s license; however, depending on the state and company regulations, additional requirements may be needed.

Whether you are a driver seeking a class B commercial drivers license or you run a company that employs commercial drivers, understand the process for obtaining a class B driver’s license and which vehicles fall into the class B designation. For help understanding any of these categories, contact us at Office Tenders today.


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