Individuals with a valid CDL in Texas may drive any vehicle in the class for which the license was issued, including their own, as long as all applicable limits and endorsements are followed. The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) regulates Career Schools and Colleges, including Commercial Truck Driving training facilities. TWC-regulated programs must adhere to strong compliance rules that encourage quality services, such as setting qualification standards for teachers and course material. More information is available on the Texas Department of Public Safety website.
Today’s commercial vehicle drivers can operate practically any vehicle, from passenger cars to buses and tractor-trailers. However, they can only do so if they have a Commercial Driver’s License, or CDL. Individuals in Texas can obtain a CDL through state license offices, but to qualify, you must pass all tests and produce all necessary papers.
4 Steps to Obtaining a Commercial Driver’s License in Texas
1. CHECK THE TEXAS CDL REQUIREMENTS
Before you begin the process of obtaining a Texas commercial driver’s license, it is best to familiarize yourself with the state’s CDL regulations (page 7). You can obtain an Interstate or Intrastate CDL in Texas. An interstate CDL from Texas allows you to drive outside of the state, but an intrastate CDL only permits you to drive within the state. Each has its own set of criteria. A minimum age requirement and CDL physical criteria are among these regulations. You will be better prepared to go on to the next steps if you review this information ahead of time.
To be eligible to apply for an Interstate Texas Class A CDL, a person must meet the following requirements:
Be 21 years old; be able to read and speak English; and have no limb loss that has not been waived.
- There is no impairment to a driver’s hand, finger, arm, foot, or leg.
- There is no diabetes that requires insulin to be controlled.
- There are no heart issues.
- There is no respiratory dysfunction.
- There is no hypertension.
- There are no rheumatic, arthritic, orthopedic, muscular, neuromuscular, or vascular conditions that would impair vehicle control.
- There is no epilepsy or other illness that can lead to loss of consciousness.
- There is no mental, neurological, organic, or functional sickness or psychiatric disorder that is likely to impair vehicle control.
- Not colorblind, vision 20/40 or better in each eye
- Have excellent hearing.
- Not a drug addict
- Not hooked to booze.
2. OBTAIN YOUR TEXAS COMMERCIAL LEARNING PERMIT
A permit is required to proceed with the procedures of obtaining a Texas Class A CDL, just like a standard driver’s license in the state of Texas. A person must complete the following qualifications before obtaining a Learner’s License:
- There are no multiple licenses.
- There will be no suspensions, revocations, disqualifications, or cancellations of driver’s licenses.
- No convictions for driving under the influence, leaving the scene of an accident, or committing any offense involving a motor vehicle in any type of vehicle.
- There have been no convictions for significant traffic infractions in any sort of motor vehicle.
- There have been no convictions in any sort of motor vehicle for accident-related traffic law infractions, and there has been no record of at-fault incidents.
3. INCLUDE CDL ENDORSEMENTS
You must pass particular written CDL endorsement tests if you want to add an endorsement to your Texas CDL. Make sure to investigate your endorsements ahead of time, since some, such as the Hazardous Materials (HazMat) endorsement, may require a background check before they can be added to your Texas CDL license.
4. COMPLETE THE TEXAS CDL WRITTEN AND SKILLS TEST
In Texas, the driver must pass a CDL driving test, which consists of two parts: knowledge tests and skills tests. To take both the written and skills examinations, an applicant must go to a driver’s license office. Not every DMV office offers CDL skills testing, so make sure to check with your local DMV office. After passing both examinations, a driver can be given a CDL license by the state of Texas. You can read the Texas Commercial Driver’s License Manual to learn more about what to expect on both examinations.
Class A – permits you to drive any combination of vehicles with a Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR) greater than 26,000 pounds and a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) greater than 10,000 pounds.
Class B consists of single or combination vehicles with a GVWR greater than 26,000 pounds and a towing vehicle weighing no more than 10,000 pounds.
Class C – Any single vehicle, or combination of vehicles, designed to transport 16 or more passengers, including the driver, or used to transport hazardous materials.
Attend a CDL Training School in Texas
Attending CDL school in Texas is an excellent approach to obtain a Commercial Driver’s License. You will learn the classroom content required to pass the written exam as well as the hands-on training required to master the skills tests by enrolling in a CDL school in Texas. For many people, this simplifies the process of obtaining a Texas CDL and increases their chances of success.
Passing Your Driving Exam And Pre-Trip Inspection
After passing your CDL written exam, you will proceed to the road test and pre-trip inspection. Not only are these two of the most critical components to get down pat, but they can also make or break your chances of earning your CDL and becoming a truck driver. If you don’t pass both of these with flying colors, you’ll have a difficult time finishing truck driving school.
A variety of prerequisites must be satisfied in order to receive a Texas CDL, and earning your Texas CDL entails numerous processes. Medical requirements, residency requirements, and knowledge and skill requirements all exist.
The following are the essential prerequisites for obtaining a CDL in Texas:
- To obtain a Texas CDL and operate a commercial vehicle in the state of Texas, you must be at least 18 years old.
- To drive a commercial motor vehicle across Texas state lines, move hazardous materials, or transport passengers, you must be at least 21 years old.
- You cannot have more than one driver’s license, and your driving privileges in Texas or any other state cannot be suspended, revoked, canceled, or disqualified.
- You must meet the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations’ medical standards.
To receive your Texas Commercial Learner’s Permit, you must complete a series of written exams (CLP). Our High Road CDL Training Program can help you prepare for these examinations.
- You must present legal personal identity, such as a Social Security Card, a Birth Certificate, or a Green Card, to confirm your Texas citizenship and right to work in the United States.
- You must declare that you are not subject to any of the CDL driver disqualifications (listed below)
- You must be fluent in both spoken and written English.
Who Is Necessary To Have A Texas CDL?
- A CDL is required to operate any of the following vehicles:
- A single vehicle with a GVWR of more than 26,000 lbs.
- A combined vehicle with a GVWR greater than 26,000 pounds capable of hauling a unit weighing more than 10,000 pounds.
- A passenger vehicle may transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
- Hazardous material (Hazmat) placards or transporting a specific agent or toxin listed in 42 CFR Part 73 were necessary for any size vehicle.
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