FMCSA Proposes National Training Standards for Entry-Level Truck and Bus Drivers

The agency says comprehensive training will emphasize safety and driving efficiency as well as other key factors

The FMCSA has proposed a set of comprehensive national prerequisite training standards for entry-level commercial truck and bus operators seeking to obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL).

“Well-trained drivers are safer drivers, which leads to greater safety for our families and friends on our highways and roads,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “With the help of our partners, today’s proposal serves as a major step towards ensuring that commercial vehicle drivers receive the necessary training required to safely operate a large truck or motorcoach.”

According to a press release, applicants seeking a “Class A” CDL would be required to obtain a minimum of 30 hours of behind-the-wheel training from an instructional program that meets FMCSA standards, including at least 10 hours of operating the vehicle on a practice driving range.

Those seeking a “Class B” would be required to obtain a minimum of 15 hours of behind-the-wheel training, including a minimum of seven hours of practice range training.

“A diverse group of commercial motor vehicle stakeholders completed a tremendous amount of work, and that effort resulted in an unprecedented consensus,” said FMCSA Acting Administrator Scott Darling. “We’ve designated 2016 as our ‘Year of Partnerships’ and these comprehensive entry-level driver training standards exemplify our commitment to working closely with our safety partners, including state and local law enforcement, the safety advocacy community, and all other stakeholders to reduce crashes and to save lives.”

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