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6.2.8 Special Training for LCV and Entry-Level Drivers (Part 380)

Special training requirements for drivers of longer combination vehicles (LCVs) and entry-level drivers are found in 49 CFR 380. Subparts A through D apply to all operators of LCVs in interstate commerce, employers of such persons, and those who provide instruction to LCV drivers. An LCV is defined as any combination of a truck–tractor and two or more trailers operating on the National System of Interstate and Defense Highways with a GVW greater than 80,000 pounds. 

Subpart F lists the entry-level driver training requirements for individuals seeking to obtain specific types of commercial driver’s licenses (CDL) or endorsements.

LCV Driver Requirements (380.107)

Drivers wanting to operate a LCV must successfully complete a LCV driver-training program as detailed in 49 CFR 380.107.

Before receiving training, a driver must present evidence to the LCV driver-instructor that he or she meets the general requirements of 49 CFR 380.201 for the specific type of LCV training required. See 49 CFR 380.107.

LCV Training Certification Document (380.401) and Employer Responsibilities (380.113)

Drivers who successfully complete the LCV training will be issued an LCV Driver-Training Certificate.

A motor carrier is prohibited from allowing a driver to operate an LCV unless the driver can produce an LCV Driver-Training Certificate or an LCV Driver-Training Certificate of Grandfathering. Employers are required to retain a copy of this certificate in the Driver Qualification File, as described in 49 CFR 380.401.

LCV Instructor Qualification Requirements (380.301)

There are two types of LCV instructors: classroom instructors and skills instructors. The requirements for each are as follows:

LCV Classroom Instructor

  • Audit the driver training course he or she intends to instruct; and
  • If employed by a training institution, meet all State requirements for a vocational instructor.

LCV Skills Instructor

  • Provide evidence of successful completion of the Driver Training Program requirements, as stated in 49 CFR 380.201, when requested by an employer or as part of a compliance review;
  • If employed by a training institution, meet all State requirements for a vocational instructor;
  • Possess a valid Class A CDL with all appropriate endorsements necessary to operate the CMVs relevant to the subject matter being taught; and
  • Have a minimum of two years of CMV driving experience in a vehicle representative of the type of LCV training being provided.

49 CFR 380.303 lists acceptable substitutions that qualify for instructor requirements.

Entry-Level Driver Training Requirements (380, Subparts F and G)

New entry-level driver training (ELDT) regulations went into effect on February 7, 2022. Entry-level drivers are required to complete training from a training provider listed on FMCSA’s Training Provider Registry prior to taking the skills or knowledge test needed to obtain certain CDLs or certain CDL endorsements.

An entry-level driver is an individual who is applying for:

  • A Class A or Class B commercial driver’s license (CDL) for the first time;
  • An upgrade of their CDL (e.g., a Class B CDL holder seeking a Class A CDL); or
  • A hazardous materials (H),passenger (P), or school bus (S) endorsement for the first time.

The requirements do not apply to individuals who have been issued a CDL or an H, P, or S endorsement prior to February 7, 2022. Individuals who obtained a commercial learner’s permit (CLP) before the February 7, 2022 compliance date are not subject to ELDT requirements as long as they obtain a CDL before the CLP, or renewed CLP, expires. 

ELDT does not apply to:

  1. Drivers excepted from the CDL requirements under 49 CFR 383.3(c), (d), and (h)

  2. Drivers applying for a restricted CDL under 49 CFR 383.3(e) through (g)

  3. Military personnel with military CMV experience who meet all the requirements and conditions of 49 CFR 383.77; and

  4. Drivers applying for a removal of a restriction in accordance with 49 CFR 383.135(b)(7).

Requirements for Entry-Level Driver Training Providers

Any entity that provides training to an entry-level driver (as defined above) is required to register on FMCSA’s Training Provider Registry. This may include motor carriers, training schools, educational institutions, State and local governments, school districts, owner-operators, and individuals, among others. Upon registering, training providers must self-certify that they meet the requirements in 49 CFR 380.703

Training providers must also electronically submit certification of driver training to the Registry by the end of the second business day after the driver has completed training. States will use this information to verify training completion before allowing a driver to take the required CDL skills test or, in the case of the H endorsement, the knowledge test. 

Learn more about training provider and curricula requirements on the Training Provider page of the Training Provider Registry website. 

Visit the Training Provider Registry to learn more about the ELDT regulations and who is subject, or to search for a registered training provider.

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