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Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Proposal eliminates CDL testing provision to ‘streamline process’


The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced a notice of proposed rulemaking on Thursday, June 27 the agency said aims to streamline the process for commercial driver’s license applicants.

“The Department is committed to reducing unnecessary barriers to employment for men and women interested in obtaining jobs in the trucking industry”, U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao said in a news release.

FMCSA said the proposal is intended to give states greater flexibility and that it would alleviate testing delays and eliminate “needless inconvenience and expense” to the CDL applicant.

“We continue to examine opportunities to provide commonsense regulatory relief to states and individuals seeking to obtain a CDL,” FMCSA Administrator Ray Martinez said.

After receiving petitions that said the 2011 provision was too restrictive, FMCSA revised the rule in 2013 to allow CDL training schools to test the applicants as long as the trainer didn’t administer the test.

In 2017, SAGE Trucking Schools recommended that FMCSA eliminate the provision, saying that state-based CDL testing compliance agencies have many other effective tools to prevent fraud, and that the rule is costly and inconvenient to third-party testers and applicants.

“FMCSA believes that the proposed change is appropriate because, as SAGE noted, there are other means of detecting and preventing fraud in CDL skills testing,” the notice of proposed rulemaking stated. “Third-party testing requires states utilize third-party testers to undertake a number of actions designed to ensure the integrity of the skills testing process.”

Once the notice is published in the Federal Register, the public will have 60 days to submit comments. 

Comments may be submitted at Regulations.gov by using Docket No. FMCSA-2018-0292.