Applying for a Illinois CDL - Endorsement H (Hazardous Materials)
If you have a valid driver’s license and want to work for a commercial company driving a vehicle, getting a special license in the state of Illinois is a requirement. This special license is known as a CDL license. It is a bit more difficult to obtain this license than what it is to obtain a regular driver’s license, but every single day there are many people who are obtaining their CDL and working for various companies around the state. When you want to get a special H endorsement to operate a vehicle that is carrying hazardous material, there are even more steps that must be completed. We will take you through the process of how to obtain that license in the state of Illinois so you are well prepared.
Applying for A CDL in Illinois
To apply for a CDL in the state, you need to do so in person at your local Illinois Department of Transportation office. If you are already licensed with a CDL but have moved from another state, you might be able to take care of the transfer online. You must do this during normal business hours, which usually operate only during the weekday. Hours vary by location.
In order to qualify for a CDL in the statethere are certain requirements that must be met. First of all, you must be a licensed driver 21 years old or older. You must have a clear driving record which is free of any type of infractions. Finally, you must successfully complete all of the required testing and obtain a photo ID card. There is a driving test, written knowledge test and vision and physical exams which must be completed to earn a CDL. Since you will be operating a vehicle carrying hazardous material, there is also a special knowledge test that must be taken for this endorsement to be granted. There are fees associated with each test, as well as for the photo ID once you have passed the test.
Before you Apply
Before applying for a CDL endorsement H license in the state it is necessary to get medical card from a doctor. This card is given after a physical has been completed and the doctor deems you in good health to operate a commercial vehicle. It is like any other physical that you would need to take before being granted a job. This card must be kept inside of the vehicle at all times, with renewal taking place once every three years unless a medical problem takes place before the end of the time period.
You will also want to ensure that you have prepared for the tests as much as possible before taking them. If you do not pass the tests on the first try, there may be waiting periods put in place before you can retake the tests. There are several ways in which to prepare for the tests and this includes attending a special truck driving school or to study the commercial driver’s handbook. Of course firsthand knowledge is always the best experience that you can have. There are no formal guidelines in place requiring any special classes to be taken, but they certainly can only benefit you.
Since you are going to operate a vehicle that carries hazardous material, special requirements are in place. These requirements were set forth by the US Patriot Act to ensure fewer threats on the roadways. Under this act, it is required that all drivers undergo a background check. There are certain convictions which will disqualify you from obtaining a CDL – Endorsement H, including terrorism or threats of terrorism, murder, rape, treason, robbery, and others. Individuals who wish to earn their CDL but request the background check to be performed. It is also necessary that the CDL license or permit number be given, as well as proof of identity and proof of US residency.
Special Facts & CDL Requirements
Drivers who are under 21 years of age but want to earn a CDL – Endorsement H may do so at age 18. However, you are not ineligible to driver the commercial vehicle across state lines, nor are you eligible to receive the special hazardous material endorsement to drive such a vehicle. There may be other special requirements in place for drivers under 21 years old as well.
You are required to provide your own vehicle for the driving portion of the test. While it does not necessarily have to be the vehicle that you plan to operate on a regular basis, it must be one that is insured and operational. Your instructor will require that you perform all of the tasks that you will need to perform on a regular basis, including the pre and post drive inspections of the vehicle. You also must use the clutch during the test.