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What are the requirements for a commercial learner’s permit?

January 23, 2016

As a commercial truck driver in Kentucky, you will have more responsibility than the average driver, who is not representing a company. Because of this, even the commercial learner’s permit comes with more regulations than a normal learner’s permit.

The United States Department of Transportation says that commercial learner’s permits, otherwise known as CLPs, allow you to train on public roads or even the highway. This can obviously create some high-risk scenarios. Because of that, there are a number of “minimal conditions” that you must first meet before your permit is obtained. The first difference between a CLP and regular learner’s permit can be seen in the age. While teenagers can get their permits between the ages of 15 to 16 in most states, you must be at least 18 in order to get a CLP. In addition to that, you must also already have a valid driver’s license. It must come from the jurisdiction that you wish to get your CLP from.

On top of that, there is a general knowledge test with Federal standards that must be taken before a CLP is obtained. You must be able to pass the test to the government standards. The test itself may differ in parts based on which vehicle you expect to be driving. For example, taxis will have some different subparts than 16-wheelers because taxi drivers transport passengers, whereas 16-wheelers generally transport equipment or materials.

While operating under a CLP, you must be attended by someone with a commercial driver’s license at all times. You are also disallowed from operating any hazardous materials while learning, due to the potential risks involved with those types of cargo. You must also keep in mind that your CLP will expire within 180 days.

Adhering to these stricter requirements can create a better screening process, making the roads a safer place for you and other drivers.