FMCSA Announces Plans to Issue Proposed Entry-Level Driver Training Rule
Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg News
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration on March 4 made public its “negotiated” proposed entry-level driver training rule that would revise the standards required for new interstate and intrastate commercial vehicle operators to obtain a commercial driver license.
The proposal does not specify a minimum number of hours that driver-trainees must spend on classroom theory, but it would require that Class A CDL driver-trainees receive a minimum of 30 hours of behind-the-wheel training, with a minimum of 10 hours on a driving range.
The Class A driving instruction also must include either driving 10 of the total required hours on a public road or 10 public road trips — each being at least 50 minutes.
Class B CDL driver-trainees must receive a minimum of 15 hours of behind-the-wheel training, with a minimum of seven hours of public road driving.
The proposal said the entities providing training must meet minimum curriculum qualifications, be listed on FMCSA’s proposed training provider registry and submit electronically to FMCSA the training certificate for each individual who completes the training.
“FMCSA has been working toward a strong entry level driver training standard since 1991, and we are pleased that they have released this proposed rule that will raise standards and improve safety,” American Trucking Associations President Bill Graves said. “This rule does a good job of outlining the knowledge and skills a new driver should have before heading out on the road, but ATA is concerned that an arbitrary requirement centered on behind-the-wheel training hours distracts from a more important focus on performance and safety outcomes.”
Irrespective of the number of hours of behind-the-wheel training, the training provider must not issue a driver a training certificate unless the student demonstrates proficiency in operating a heavy truck or bus.
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|By Eric Miller|
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