Commercial Vehicle License for New York Class A Endorsement

by Joshua on October 05, 2014

In order to drive a commercial vehicle in the state of New York, a special permit must be obtained. This permit must be obtained through the New York DMV, and is available to licensed drivers who are 21 years of age or older. Although the state does not require drivers have any formal training to earn their CDL , there are many truck driving schools available which can help you learn all that is needed to successfully complete the required tests and perform to your top standards while operating the vehicle.

Requirements for a Class A CDL

A Class A CDL in New York enables you to drive a commercial vehicle with a gross weight of 26,001 pounds or more. To receive this license, a written test , skills test, and a driving test all must be completed successfully. These tests are administered to ensure that only capable drivers are handling these oversized machines. Additionally, it is necessary that a vision exam be passed, and a medical card obtained prior to the day of CDL application. You must pay all of the necessary fees to obtain the testing as well as the license once done. These fees increase without notice, and must be paid with cash or a personal check on the day that you take them. All tests can be completed on the same day at the local DMV office.
You must already have a valid driver’s license in order to qualify for a permit to drive a commercial vehicle. You must also present proof of residency in the state of New York , proof of social security number, and have a background check performed. Most people are eligible to receive the CDL license; however, there are quite a few criminal convictions that bar eligibility. If you already have a CDL driver’s license in another state, a new one must be obtained when moving to New York and the old license surrendered. You cannot have two CDLs at the same time.

Preparing for the Tests

Before you make an appointment with the DMV for the CDL license, you must take the time to prepare and learn all of the necessary skills to operate this type of vehicle. It is not as simple as driving a regular car or truck, thus there is much to learn. There is a lot of information to learn, and it is all important in the operation of your truck and in your new job. Truck driving schools are available for those who wish to attend, although the state does not make this a requirement. These schools offer various types of training to potential drivers, and the length of time for complete varies. Usually it is only a matter of weeks for the training to be completed. If you decide to handle things without this prior class, you must study the CDL manual thoroughly to pass the test. Not only must you fully understand how to operate a commercial vehicle, you must also understand all of the additional steps that must be taken, including inspection of the vehicle prior to driving.

Medical Certification & Tests

In the state of New York, all commercial truck drivers must carry a medical card with them at all times. The medical card must be show to the employee at the DMV on the day of your testing. It certifies that you are in good health and can fully operate a commercial vehicle without any health problems interfering with your abilities. Once granted, the medical card must stay inside of your vehicle at all times, and must be retaken once every three years. You can see the doctor of your choice for this physical examination.
The day of your skills and road test, a vision test will be given. If you wear glasses, you must have them on the day of the test and any time that you drive the vehicle.
You must have your own vehicle present on the day of testing to take the road test. Along with driving the commercial vehicle it is also imperative that you understand how to take the pre-inspection of the vehicle without any help.

A background check is required in order to obtain a CDL. The background check requires a fee that must be paid in addition to the other test fees. If you have been convicted of a criminal offense, this might disqualify you from earning the CDL. Among the offenses that will make you ineligible to receive a CDL include:

  • Rape
  • Murder
  • Terrorism
  • Treason
  • Arson
  • Kidnapping
  • Extortion
  • Smuggling
  • Assault with intent to kill
  • Others

Remember, this is not a full list of the crimes that might prevent you from obtaining a CDL in the state of New York. If you are in doubt, it is a good idea to ask a DMV employee first.

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