Truck driver training classes are a familiar feature to those seeking a job in the industry. There are well-known commercial schools, classes at local community colleges, and programs run directly by motor carriers, among others. Each holds out the promise of preparing the student for the Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) exam, for upgrading from a Class B to a Class A CDL or for obtaining a specific CDL endorsement, like the hazardous materials (H), passenger (P), or school bus (S) endorsement.
Now all these providers of truck driver training have another thing in common. Beginning February 7, 2020, they must be registered with the federal government and meet certain minimum curriculum requirements. That’s provided the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) does not delay implementation.
In a new PrePass whitepaper, we explain how “training providers” of any sort must be registered with FMCSA’s newly-established Training Provider Registry (TPR). While third-party accreditation of training providers is not required, each must self-certify that it meets the new FMCSA entry-level driver training curriculum requirements and that the instructors it uses are qualified under FMCSA and any state instructor criteria. Instructors themselves need not register.
The whitepaper also tells how the efforts to establish entry-level driver training (ELDT) requirements (formally known as “Minimum Training Requirements for Entry-Level Commercial Motor Vehicle Operators”) has been a long process, filled with attempts, failures, studies, litigation and compromise.
The new ELDT regulations apply to both interstate and intrastate commercial motor vehicle drivers and is notable in several respects, which are detailed in the whitepaper. The new federal ELDT rules do not preempt those states which have requirements over and above the federal rules – such as minimum classroom hours or additional instructor criteria – so students should check out the state requirements at the same time they compare training providers.