Applying for a Pennsylvania CDL – Class C License w/ Passenger License
In the State of Pennsylvania , one must have a commercial driver’s license (CDL) for many different types of commercial transportation endeavors. In order to transport passengers, you need a Class C license with different endorsements, depending on the type of vehicle you intend to operate. We will give an overview of that. If you intend to drive a vehicle designed to transport 16 or more, including the driver, then you need to obtain a Class C license.
In addition to obtaining the Class C License , you must also procure several types of endorsement, which we will explore as well in this article.
The Permit Process
First you have to fill out a (CLD) commercial driver’s learning permit application. A self-certification form and pay the fees that are required for this. Drivers who will be in “Non-exempted” activities will also have to submit a valid medical examiners certificate before they can be given a permit. When the application is accepted, you will be given knowledge Test Authorization for each CDL Class, all the endorsements you want, as well as any restrictions that you need lifted. The KTA is your authorization to go to a DMV office for the knowledge test. When you pass the test, a learner permit is given to you, which will allow you to begin the physical learning of your skills that you will need to pass the test.
You have to wait at least 15 days from the day the permit is issued, and the date of your Class C test for skills. You may however contact PeddDOT after the knowledge test, to schedule your skills test. You are allowed three attempts at passing the skills test. That is for one permit. If you do not pass it within three tries, then you have to take another permit test. You have one year in which to take your three tests.
A KTA (Knowledge Test Authorization) is similar to the learner’s permit . It cannot be used to drive however. The only reason that you have it, is to indicate the restrictions, classes and endorsements of you are requesting. It gives you the opportunity to take the knowledge tests at a Driver License Center. You have to have it in order to take the Knowledge test. Only after that test, is the learner permit issued, so that you can begin to practice your skills. Remember that there is a big difference between the knowledge test authorization and the actually learner permit.
If you have a commercial license , already, then you must self-certify the type of driving that you expect to operate in.
There are different types of Knowledge Tests for each class of the CDL licesne in PA. They vary depending upon the restrictions, and endorsements that you wish to have with your CDL. A general knowledge test is required for all of those who take the CDL test, regardless of the type of restrictions of endorsements. It is reccomnened that you carefully study the CDL driver license manual in order to pass these tests. It is very important to read, review and retain all the information in this manual. This is for both your safety and the safety of those around you.
After the 15 day wait to take your knowledge test, it consists of 50 questions that you must answer. If you want to have an endorsement of passengers, then you have to answer another 50 questions. You can do this at the same time; you do not have to wait an additional time period.
If you want to have a school bus endorsement added to your CDL, then there are 20 questions unique to that that you must answer. As with the passenger endorsement, there is not additional wait time for this, and can be taken at the same time.
Once you have gotten a knowledge test authorization, and passed the required tests as required above by PennDOT, then you can take your skills test. You will take this with the vehicle that you are obtaining your CDL for. You have to demonstrate your proficiency in driving this type of vehicle safely. It will include an inspection prior to the trip; off road maneuvers and showing the tester the ability to park the vehicle as well. You can find a much more in-depth discussion of all that the test will entail, in the drivers manual, available at any PennDOT office , as well as online.
You are allowed to take your actual skills test as soon as 15 days after you successfully complete the knowledge tests outline prior. You must have your permit for a minimum of 15 days prior to taking the skills test.
This does not mean that you cannot schedule a skills test right away however. If you passed your knowledge test and are ready for your class b testing, you can schedule your test online.