TN_CDLManual
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
Section 1
INTRODUCTION
This Section Covers
•
•
•
Commercial Driver License Tests
Driver Disqualifications
Other Safety Rules
There is a federal requirement that each state
have minimum standards for the licensing of
commercial drivers.
This manual provides driver license testing
information for drivers who wish to have a
commercial driver license (CDL). This manual does
NOT provide information on all the federal and
state requirements needed before you can drive a
commercial motor vehicle (CMV).
Every effort has been made to provide, in this
publication, the most current and accurate
information as of November 1, 2010.
Misprints or outdated information that may
appear within these pages will not override
or supersede changes that ha ve occurred in
the la w, promulgated rules and regulations or
policy that has been initiated since the
printing date.
This manual does not give a complete
statement of all Tennessee traffic laws and
may not reflect the most recent changes in
state and federal regulations. For the most
current information you should re vie w
Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 55 and
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.
What is a Commercial Driver License?
Operators of larger and more complex vehicles will
need to apply for a Commercial Driver License
(CDL). These licenses include Class A, B, or C
depending upon the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating
(GVWR), Gross Combination Weight Rating
(GCWR), and/or what is being transported.
The Class A with the 57 restriction code (A/57) is
for drivers that drive combination vehicles that
would qualify under the Class A category,
however the power unit can carry a load in
itself and the trailer has a GVWR of 10,001 pounds
or more. Some examples are a dump truck, or
delivery truck pulling a trailer with a GVWR of at
Section 1 - Introduction
least 10,001 pounds. Another example is a truck
towing a mobile home.
Any driver wishing to obtain a Class A with the 57
restriction code will need to take the skills test in a
truck and trailer that has a Gross Combination
Weight Rating (GCWR) of 26,001 pounds or more,
provided that the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating
(GVWR) of the trailer is at least 10,001 pounds.
Prior to any CDL skills tests, the vision test and all
applicable CDL knowledge tests must be passed.
You must have a CDL to operate:
Any single vehicle with a gross vehicle weight
rating (GVWR) of 26,001 pounds or more.
Any combination vehicle with a gross
combination weight rating of 26,001 or more
pounds, if the trailer(s) has a GVWR of 10,001 or
more pounds.
Any vehicle designed to transport more than
fifteen (15) passengers in addition to the driver,
or if the vehicle is used as a school bus,
regardless of the weight of the vehicle.
Any size vehicle which requires hazardous
material placards, or is carrying material listed as
a select agent or toxin in 42 CFR part 73. Federal
regulations through the Department of Homeland
Security require a background check and
fingerprinting for the Hazardous Materials
endorsement.
Rules for securing the transportation of hazardous
materials (including explosives) are provided by the
Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and
the U. S. Department of Transportation. These
rules require background checks for commercial
drivers and the collection of those drivers’
fingerprints.
Applicants are required to have
fingerprints taken by a vendor contracted by the
Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, submit to a
criminal background check completed by TBI and
FBI, and submit to a threat assessment conducted
by the TSA. TSA then notifies the State as to
whether or not the applicant is eligible to receive a
Hazardous Materials Endorsement (HME):
Adding HME- applicants wanting to add the
hazardous materials endorsement (HME) on their
CDL are required to first submit to a vision
screening, pass the hazardous materials knowledge
test, and then apply through the TSA for a criminal
background check, and complete the fingerprint
requirement through a vendor contracted by the
TBI.
Page 1-1
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
Transfers – applicants transferring a CDL with
hazardous materials endorsement (HME) from
another state are required to follow the TSA threat
assessment procedure and to submit to a vision and
knowledge test. If an applicant transferring a CDL
with the hazardous materials endorsement was
cleared by the TSA 6 months or less prior to their
request to transfer to Tennessee, a TSA threat
assessment would not be required.
Do You Need a CDL?
No
Does the vehicle or
combination of vehicles
have a manufacturer’s
weight rating (GVWR)
over 26,000 pounds?
Yes
For more information on a hazardous material
endorsement visit the Tennessee Department of
Safety’s webpage :
tn.gov/safety/driverlicense/hazmat.htm
Is the vehicle
a
combination
vehicle
towing a unit
over 10,000
pounds
GVWR?
To get a CDL, you must pass a general knowledge
test and skills test consisting of a pre-trip
inspection, basic control maneuvers, and a road
test. This manual will help you pass the tests. This
manual is not a substitute for a truck driver training
class or program. Formal training is the most
reliable way to learn the many special skills
required for safely driving a large commercial
vehicle and becoming a professional driver in the
trucking industry. Figure 1.1 below helps you
determine if you need a CDL.
Yes
You
need a
Class A
CDL.
No
Does the
single Yes
vehicle have
a GVWR
over 26,000
pounds?
Yes
You
need a
Class B
CDL.
No
Is the vehicle
designed to
carry 16 or
more people
(including
the driver)?
Yes
You
need a
Class C
CDL.
No
Does the
vehicle
require
hazardous
material
placards or
transport a
select agent
or toxin?
Yes
You
need a
Class C
CDL.
No
You DO NOT
need a CDL.
NOTE:
A bus may be Class A, B, or C depending on whether
the GVWR is over 26,001 pounds or is a combination
vehicle.
Figure 1.1
Section 1 - Introduction
Page 1-2
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
1.1 – Commercial Driver License Tests
1.1.1 – Knowledge Tests
You will have to take one or more knowledge
tests, depending on what class of license and
what endorsements you need. The CDL
knowledge tests include: The general knowledge
test, taken by all applicants.
The passenger transport test, taken by all bus
driver applicants.
The air brakes test, which you must take if your
vehicle has air brakes, including air over
hydraulic brakes.
similar. The examiner will tell you how each control
test is to be done.
On-road Test. You will be tested on your skill to
safely drive your vehicle in a variety of traffic
situations. The situations may include left and right
turns, intersections, railroad crossings, curves, up
and down grades, single or multi-lane roads,
streets, or highways. The examiner will tell you
where to drive.
Figure 1.2 details which sections of this manual
you should study for each particular class of
license and for each endorsement.
What Sections Should You Study?
The combination vehicles test, which is required
if you want to drive combination vehicles.
LICENSE
TYPE
2
X
X
X
3
X
X
X
X
1.1.2 – Skills Tests
6
X
If you pass the required knowledge test(s), you can
take the CDL skills tests. There are three types of
general skills that will be tested: pre-trip inspection,
basic vehicle control, and on-road driving. You
must take these tests in the type of vehicle for
which you wish to be licensed. Any vehicle that
has components marked or labeled cannot be
used for the Pre-Trip Inspection Test.
7
Basic Vehicle Control. You will be tested on your
skill to control the vehicle. You will be asked to
move your vehicle forward, backward, and turn it
within a defined area. These areas may be marked
with traffic lanes, cones, barriers, or something
Section 1 - Introduction
X
X
X
X
4
5*
Pre-trip Vehicle Inspection. You will be tested to
see if you know whether your vehicle is safe to
drive. You will be asked to do a pre-trip inspection
of your vehicle and explain to the examiner what
you would inspect and why.
School Bus
X
Passenger
X
Tank Vehicles
X
Double / Triple
Class C
1
Hazardous
Materials
Class B
The doubles/triples test, required if you want to
pull double or triple trailers.
The school bus test, required if you want to drive
a school bus.
Sections to Study
The tanker test, required if you want to haul a
liquid or liquid gas in a permanently mounted
cargo tank rated at 119 gallons or more or a
portable tank rated at 1,000 gallons or more.
Class A
The hazardous materials test, required if you
want to haul hazardous materials as defined in
49 CFR 383.5. In order to obtain this
endorsement you are also required to pass a
Transportation Security Administration (TSA)
background check.
ENDORSEMENT
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
8
X
9
X
10
X
11
X
X
X
X
X
12
X
X
X
X
X
13
X
X
X
X
X
*Study section 5 if you plan to operate vehicles
equipped with air brakes.
Figure 1.2 – What to Study
Page 1-3
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
1.2 – CDL Disqualifications
1.2.1 – General
You will lose your CDL:
You may not drive a commercial motor vehicle if
you are disqualified for any reason.
For at least 60 days if you have committed two
serious traffic violations within a three-year period
involving a CMV.
1.2.2 – Alcohol, Leaving the Scene of an
Accident, and Commission of a Felony
For at least 120 days for three or more serious
traffic violations within a three-year period
involving a CMV.
It is illegal to operate a CMV if your blood alcohol
concentration (BAC) is .04% or more. If you
operate a CMV, you shall be deemed to have
given your consent to alcohol testing.
1.2.4 – Violation of Out-of-Service Orders
You will lose your CDL:
You will lose your CDL for at least one year for a
first offense for:
For at least 180 days if you have committed your
first violation of an out-of-service order.
Driving a CMV if your blood alcohol concentration
is .04% or higher.
For at least two years if you have committed two
violations of an out-of-service order in a ten-year
period.
Driving a CMV under the influence of alcohol.
Refusing to undergo blood alcohol testing.
Driving a CMV while under the influence of a
controlled substance.
For at least three years if you have committed
three or more violations of an out-of-service order
in a ten-year period].
Leaving the scene of an accident involving a
CMV.
1.2.5 – Railroad-highway Grade Crossing
Violations
Committing a felony involving the use of a CMV.
You will lose your CDL:
Driving a CMV when the CDL is suspended.
For at least 60 days for your first violation.
Causing a fatality through negligent operation of
a CMV.
For at least 120 days for your second violation
within a three-year period.
You will lose your CDL for at least three years if
the offense occurs while you are operating a CMV
that is placarded for hazardous materials.
You will lose your CDL for life for a second offense.
You will lose your CDL for life if you use a CMV to
commit a felony involving controlled substances.
You will be put out-of-service for 24 hours if you
have any detectable amount of alcohol under
.04%.
1.2.3 – Serious Traffic Violations
Serious traffic violations are excessive speeding
(15 mph or more above the posted limit), reckless
driving, improper or erratic lane changes, following
a vehicle too closely, traffic offenses committed in
a CMV in connection with fatal traffic accidents,
driving a CMV without obtaining a CDL or having a
CDL in the driver’s possession, driving a CMV
without the proper class of CDL and/or
endorsements , and violating a state or local law or
ordinance on motor vehicle traffic control prohibiting
texting while driving.
Section 1 - Introduction
For at least one year for your third violation within
a three-year period.
These violations include violation of a federal, state
or local law or regulation pertaining to one of the
following six offenses at a railroad-highway grade
crossing:
For drivers who are not required to always stop,
failing to stop before reaching the crossing if the
tracks are not clear.
For drivers who are not required to always stop,
failing to slow down and check that the tracks are
clear of an approaching train.
For drivers who are always required to stop,
failing to stop before driving onto the crossing.
For all drivers failing to have sufficient space to
drive completely through the crossing without
stopping.
For all drivers failing to obey a traffic control
device or the directions of an enforcement official
at the crossing.
Page 1-4
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
For all drivers failing to negotiate a crossing
because of insufficient undercarriage clearance.
1.2.6 – Hazardous Materials Endorsement
Background Check and Disqualifications
If you require a hazardous materials endorsement
you will be required to submit your fingerprints and
be subject to a background check.
You will be denied or you will lose your hazardous
materials endorsement if you:
Are not a lawful permanent resident of the United
States.
Renounce your United States citizenship.
Are wanted or under indictment for certain
felonies.
Have a conviction in military or civilian court for
certain felonies.
Have been adjudicated as a mental defective or
committed to a mental institution.
Are considered to pose a security threat as
determined by the Transportation Security
Administration.
The background check procedures vary from
jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Your licensing agency
will provide you with all the information you need
to complete the required TSA background check
procedures.
1.2.7 – Traffic Violations in Your Personal
Vehicle
The Motor Carrier Safety Improvement Act
(MCSIA) of 1999 requires a CDL holder to be
disqualified from operating a commercial motor
vehicle if the CDL holder has been convicted of
certain types of moving violations in their personal
vehicle.
If your privilege to operate your personal vehicle is
revoked, cancelled, or suspended due to violations
of traffic control laws (other than parking violations)
you will also lose your CDL driving privileges.
If your privilege to operate your personal vehicle is
revoked, cancelled, or suspended due to alcohol,
controlled substance or felony violations, you will
lose your CDL for 1 year. If you are convicted of a
second violation in your personal vehicle or CMV
you will lose your CDL for life.
Section 1 - Introduction
If your license to operate your personal vehicle is
revoked, cancelled, or suspended you may not
obtain a “hardship” license to operate a CMV.
1.3 – Other CDL Rules
There are other federal and state rules that affect
drivers operating CMVs in all states. Among them
are:
You cannot have more than one license. If you
break this rule, a court may fine you up to $5,000
or put you in jail and keep your home state
license and return any others.
You must notify your employer within 30 days of
conviction for any traffic violations (except
parking). This is true no matter what type of
vehicle you were driving.
You must notify your motor vehicle licensing
agency within 30 days if you are convicted in any
other jurisdiction of any traffic violation (except
parking). This is true no matter what type of
vehicle you were driving.
49 CFR 384.226- Prohibition on Masking
Convictions. Prevents states from masking,
deferring imposition of judgement, or allowing an
individual to enter into a diversion program that
would prevent a CDL driver’s conviction for any
violation, in any type of motor vehicle, from
appearing on the driver record, whether the driver
was convicted in the state where the driver is
licensed or another state. For example, federal
rules do not allow a driver to have a conviction
downgraded for paying court costs or attending
driving school. Once a driver is found guilty, the
charges cannot be reduced.
You must notify your employer within two
business days if your license is suspended,
revoked, or canceled, or if you are disqualified
from driving.
You must give your employer information on all
driving jobs you have held for the past 10 years.
You must do this when you apply for a
commercial driving job.
No one can drive a commercial motor vehicle
without a CDL. A court may fine you up to $5,000
or put you in jail for breaking this rule.
If you have a hazardous materials endorsement
you must notify and surrender your hazardous
materials endorsement to the state that issued
your CDL within 24 hours of any conviction or
indictment in any jurisdiction, civilian or military,
for, or found not guilty by reason of insanity of a
disqualifying crime listed in 49 CFR 1572.103;
who is adjudicated as a mental defective or
committed to a mental institution as specified in
Page 1-5
ADDENDUM
Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security
2011 Commercial Driver License Manual
February 1, 2012
PAGE 1-6, and Pages 1-10 to Page 1-11
The Change for these pages is the only Acceptable Documents for U.S. Citizenship
and the Only Acceptable Documents for Lawful Permanent Resident Status
U.S. Citizen
• Valid, unexpired U.S. Passport.
• Certified copy of a birth certificate filed with a State Office of Vital Statistics or
equivalent agency in the individual's State of birth, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands,
Guam, American Samoa or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
• Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA) issued by the U.S. Department of State.
• Certificate of Naturalization issued by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security
(DHS).
• Certificate of Citizenship issued by DHS.
Lawful Permanent Resident
• Valid, unexpired Permanent Resident Card, issued by USCIS or INS.
PAGE 1-8 The Change is in Contact Information to schedule CDL Skills Test
Commercial Driver License (CDL) Skills Tests are administered by appointment only at the following
Driver Service Center test locations listed below. All CDL Skills Tests must be scheduled by contacting
one of the following Driver Service Center test locations throughout the state:
Shelby County (901) 543-6519
Madison County (731) 423-6622
Davidson County (615) 532-9778
Maury County (931) 380-3357
Hamilton County (423) 634-0127
Putnam County (931) 528-5669
Knox County (865) 594-6528
Washington County (423) 926-1946
Please assist us in providing you the best possible service by keeping your appointment. If you cannot
keep your appointment, call the driver service center where your appointment is scheduled at least 24
hours in advance so another fellow driver from the waiting list can be scheduled in place of your
appointment.
There are no changes to Figure 1.3
02/1/2012
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
49 CFR 1572.109; or who renounces his or her
U. S. citizenship;
•
U.S. Government / Federal issued
Certified Birth Certificate
Your employer may not let you drive a
commercial motor vehicle if you have more than
one license or if your CDL is suspended or
revoked. A court may fine the employer up to
$5,000 or put him/her in jail for breaking this rule.
•
U.S. Certificate of Birth Abroad (DS-1350
or FS-545
•
Report of Birth Abroad of a citizen of the
US. (FS-240)
All states are connected to one computerized
system to share information about CDL drivers.
The states will check on drivers' accident records
to be sure that drivers do not have more than one
CDL.
•
U.S. Passport Card (Valid or Expired)
You must be properly restrained by a safety belt
at all times while operating a commercial motor
vehicle. The safety belt design holds the driver
securely behind the wheel during a crash, helping
the driver to control the vehicle and reduces the
chance of serious injury or death. If you do not
wear a safety belt, you are four times more likely
to be fatally injured if you are thrown from the
vehicle.
1.4 – Applying for a Commercial Driver
License (CDL) or permit in the
State of Tennessee
To apply for a Commercial Driver’s License or
permit, you must meet all the qualifications
described below:
1. You must be at least twenty-one (21) years of
age. EXCEPTIONS: if you operate a vehicle
solely intrastate and within 100 miles of job,
and your vehicle requires no special
endorsements, you may obtain a B license at
age 18. At age 19 you can obtain a Class A
or Class B license without endorsement.
2. You must not currently be under a driver
license suspension, cancellation or revocation
in the State of Tennessee or any other state.
3. An applicant for a CDL must be able to provide
proof of U.S. Citizenship or Lawful Permanent
Resident status in order to qualify for issuance
of a Tennessee CDL.
Acceptable Documents for Proof of U.S.
Citizenship
•
Valid or expired U.S. Passport
•
Certified U.S./ State issued Birth
Certificate
Section 1 - Introduction
• Certificate of Naturalization (Form N-550,
N-570, or N-578)
•
Certificate of U.S. Citizenship (Form N560 or N-561)
•
U.S. Citizen Identification Card (I-197, I17
Acceptable Documents for Proof of Lawful
Permanent Resident Status
• Permanent Resident Alien Card (Form I551)
•
Foreign Passport with Visa or I-94
stamped “processed for I-551”
•
I-94 that is stamped with one of the
following statuses: Asylee,
Parolee/Parole, Refugee, Asylum, HPhumanitarian parolee, PIP-public interest
parolee
•
Temporary I-551 stamp on Form I-94,
Arrival/Departure Record, with
photograph of the bearer
•
U.S. Dept. of Receptions and Placement
Program Assurance Form I-94 attached
& stamped REFUGEE
•
Permanent Resident Re-Entry Permit (I327)
•
Travel Document issued to Permanent
Residents and Refugees ( I-327 & I-571)
4. You must have a valid, current DOT medical
card. This is also required if you are employed
by a government entity and require the
passenger, school bus or hazardous material
endorsement(s).
5. You must provide two proofs of domicile and
either a Tennessee license or valid CDL from
another state.
Proof of Tennessee domicile will be required for
original, reinstatement, new, returning residents,
CDL permits, CDL conversions and a CDL
upgrade. Original documents must be shown.
Page 1-6
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
Domicile is the person’s fixed, permanent and
principal home for legal purposes and to
which a person has the intention of returning
whenever he/she is absent.
Resident means every person that makes
Tennessee their state of domicile, or lives in
Tennessee for a consecutive period of time
exceeding thirty (30) days and has taken
employment or would qualify as a registered
voter.
Acceptable Domicile Documents
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Current utility bill including landline
telephone, electric, water, gas, cable,
etc.includes
“bundle”
packages,
(Wireless telephone bills cannot be
accepted).
Current vehicle registration (personal
vehicle not company vehicle) dated
within the last 12 months.
Tennessee vehicle title showing
Tennessee address (you can use either
title or vehicle registration but not both
as proofs).
Mortgage papers – such as the property
deed or mortgage payment
coupon/book.
Copy of Lease Agreement or Contract
with notarized signatures OR
accompanied by signed realty agency
letterhead confirming lease validity.
Voter registration card – NOT the
application for voter registration.
Military LES papers listing Tennessee
as home of record.
Current filed Internal Revenue Service
tax return – (not tax return booklet).
NOTE: (Internal Revenue Service E-filed returns
must include the W-2 form AND confirmation page
and are acceptable only if dated within the
previous tax year)
ALL
DOCUMENTS
MUST
INCLUDE
A
TENNESSEE RESIDENTAL ADDRESS. THE
SAME TENNESSEE ADDRESS MUST BE ON
ALL DOCUMENTS PRESENTED.
1.5 – Exemptions
Exemptions from Commercial Driver
License: the following drivers are not
required to obtain a CDL in Tennessee:
Section 1 - Introduction
1. Farmers
or
nurserymen
transporting
agricultural products, farm machinery or farm
supplies to and from a farm or nursery, as long
as the vehicle is operated inside the state of
Tennessee within 150 miles of the farm or
nursery, and is not used as a common or
contract motor carrier.
2. Operators of emergency vehicles.
3. Active duty military personnel; members of the
military reserves; member of the national
guard on active duty, including personnel on
full-time national guard duty, personnel on
part-time national guard training, and national
uard military technicians (civilians who are
required to wear military uniforms); and active
duty U.S. Coast Guard personnel. This
exception is not applicable to U.S. Reserve
technicians.
IMPORTANT:
This military
exemption only applies to those drivers
when operating a commercial vehicle for
military purposes.
4. Operators of recreational vehicles.
5. Operators of vehicles leased strictly to
transport personal possessions for nonbusiness purposes.
1.6 – Learner Permits
In order to get a learner permit for a CDL,
applicants must meet the same qualifications as for
a full CDL, and pass all knowledge tests required
for the vehicle they intend to operate.
Learner permits are issued for 12 months from the
date of issuance and cost $14 for a Class PA or
$13 for a Class PB or Class PC. There is an
additional charge of $2.50 for each endorsement.
The permit will be added to the license a driver
already has, which will more than likely have a
different expiration date.
Drivers with a learner permit may operate a
commercial vehicle only when someone with a
valid CDL for that class of vehicle is
accompanying them in the front seat of the
vehicle.
1.7- Where to Apply
The Commercial Driver License knowledge test(s)
to be eligible to obtain a commercial driver license
learner permit, is offered at most Driver Service
Centers located throughout the state. Additional
Page 1-7
ADDENDUM
Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security
2011 Commercial Driver License Manual
February 1, 2012
PAGE 1-6, and Pages 1-10 to Page 1-11
The Change for these pages is the only Acceptable Documents for U.S. Citizenship
and the Only Acceptable Documents for Lawful Permanent Resident Status
U.S. Citizen
• Valid, unexpired U.S. Passport.
• Certified copy of a birth certificate filed with a State Office of Vital Statistics or
equivalent agency in the individual's State of birth, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands,
Guam, American Samoa or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
• Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA) issued by the U.S. Department of State.
• Certificate of Naturalization issued by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security
(DHS).
• Certificate of Citizenship issued by DHS.
Lawful Permanent Resident
• Valid, unexpired Permanent Resident Card, issued by USCIS or INS.
PAGE 1-8 The Change is in Contact Information to schedule CDL Skills Test
Commercial Driver License (CDL) Skills Tests are administered by appointment only at the following
Driver Service Center test locations listed below. All CDL Skills Tests must be scheduled by contacting
one of the following Driver Service Center test locations throughout the state:
Shelby County (901) 543-6519
Madison County (731) 423-6622
Davidson County (615) 532-9778
Maury County (931) 380-3357
Hamilton County (423) 634-0127
Putnam County (931) 528-5669
Knox County (865) 594-6528
Washington County (423) 926-1946
Please assist us in providing you the best possible service by keeping your appointment. If you cannot
keep your appointment, call the driver service center where your appointment is scheduled at least 24
hours in advance so another fellow driver from the waiting list can be scheduled in place of your
appointment.
There are no changes to Figure 1.3
02/1/2012
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
information on each Driver License Service Center
location, including hours of operation, can be
obtained online at: tn.gov/safety
Skills Tests are administered by appointment only
at the following locations throughout the state:
Endorsements to a
Tennessee Commercial
Driver License
N
Permanent Tanks, or Portable Tanks
of Rated Capacity of 1000 gallons of
liquid or gaseous material
Jackson (Madison Co.)
H
Hazardous materials (Haz Mat)
Johnson City (Washington Co.)
X
Permanent Tanks, or Portable Tanks
of Rated Capacity of 1000 gallons of
liquid or gaseous material required to
be placarded
Columbia (Maury Co.)
T
Double/Triple trailers
Memphis (Shelby Co.)
P
16 or more passengers including
driver
S
School Bus
Chattanooga-Bonny Oaks (Hamilton Co.)
Cookeville (Putnam Co.)
Knoxville-Strawberry Plains (Knox Co.)
Nashville-Hart Lane (Davidson Co.)
Additional assistance can be obtained by
telephone by calling the Tennessee Department of
Safety Customer Care Call Center, toll-free at 1866-849-3548. Days and hours of operation are
Monday through Friday 7:30 am to 5:00 pm,
Central Standard Time.
The local telephone
number to Nashville is 615-253-5221.
Please assist us in providing the best possible
service by keeping your appointment.
GCWR Gross Combination Weight
Rating
GVWR Gross Vehicle Weight Rating
Figure 1.3
If you cannot keep your appointment, call the
driver service center where your appointment is
scheduled at least 24 hours in advance so another
fellow driver from the waiting list can be scheduled
in place of your appointment.
Section 1 - Introduction
Page 1-8
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
Restriction Codes
Commercial Driver Licenses
Code
Description
Code L- Vehicle
without Air Brakes
Driver not permitted to drive with
Air Brakes because:
●Did not take Air Brakes
knowledge test,
or
● did not take CDL skills test in a
vehicle equipped with Air Brakes
Code 51- Intrastate
Only
Used for all CDL's issued to a
driver under 21 years of age
Code 52Government
Vehicles Only
For drivers that drive government
vehicles only. (Cannot have
school bus, passenger or hazmat
endorsement)
Code 53-Intracity
Zone Only
For driver who does not meet
DOT physical standards but are
allowed by FMCSA to drive their
CMV in a very limited area.
For drivers who are required to
meet DOT physical standards but
fail those standards due to less
than 20/40 vision in one eye only
or insulin controlled diabetes.
Can drive only within State of TN
in intrastate commerce. P,S, & H
endorsements not allowed.
Code 54-Intrastate
Only, Medical
Limitation
Code 55- Except
Class A Bus
Issued to drivers with a Class A
who are licensed to drive Class
B or Class C passenger with
capacity of 16 or more including
driver
Code 56 Except
Class A and Class
B Bus
Issued to Class A or Class B
drivers with a passenger
endorsement to drive passenger
vehicles that have a rated
capacity of 16 or more
passengers including the driver
that weighs 26,000 GVWR or
less.
57-Except
Tractor-Trailer
Added to the Class A only, for
drivers who operate a vehicle
meeting Class A weight
definitions, but the power unit
alone is also capable of carrying
loads. Examples: Dump truck
towing a backhoe. Truck towing
a mobile home.
Figure 1.4
Section 1 - Introduction
Page 1-9
ADDENDUM
Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security
2011 Commercial Driver License Manual
February 1, 2012
PAGE 1-6, and Pages 1-10 to Page 1-11
The Change for these pages is the only Acceptable Documents for U.S. Citizenship
and the Only Acceptable Documents for Lawful Permanent Resident Status
U.S. Citizen
• Valid, unexpired U.S. Passport.
• Certified copy of a birth certificate filed with a State Office of Vital Statistics or
equivalent agency in the individual's State of birth, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands,
Guam, American Samoa or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
• Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA) issued by the U.S. Department of State.
• Certificate of Naturalization issued by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security
(DHS).
• Certificate of Citizenship issued by DHS.
Lawful Permanent Resident
• Valid, unexpired Permanent Resident Card, issued by USCIS or INS.
PAGE 1-8 The Change is in Contact Information to schedule CDL Skills Test
Commercial Driver License (CDL) Skills Tests are administered by appointment only at the following
Driver Service Center test locations listed below. All CDL Skills Tests must be scheduled by contacting
one of the following Driver Service Center test locations throughout the state:
Shelby County (901) 543-6519
Madison County (731) 423-6622
Davidson County (615) 532-9778
Maury County (931) 380-3357
Hamilton County (423) 634-0127
Putnam County (931) 528-5669
Knox County (865) 594-6528
Washington County (423) 926-1946
Please assist us in providing you the best possible service by keeping your appointment. If you cannot
keep your appointment, call the driver service center where your appointment is scheduled at least 24
hours in advance so another fellow driver from the waiting list can be scheduled in place of your
appointment.
There are no changes to Figure 1.3
02/1/2012
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
For All Commercial Drivers,
Before you apply for your
CDL…
Prepare for your test
•
•
•
•
•
•
The CDL Knowledge test can be taken
at any full-service Driver Service Center.
You will not have to study this entire
manual. See Figure 1.2 on page 1.2
Allow yourself plenty of time for your
tests:
At least one hour for the General
Knowledge test, and an additional 20-30
minutes for each additional test. Try to
arrive as early in the day as possible.
Stations
have
different
operating
schedules, so check ahead of time for
days and hours of operation.
If you need an oral test, please call
ahead of time for an appointment.
Obtain Your D.O.T. Medical Card
•
•
All drivers applying for a CDL license
must have a current, valid DOT medical
card before they are allowed to renew,
get a duplicate, take a test or in any way
proceed with the CDL process.
Having a current, valid medical card is
also required if you are employed by a
government entity and require the
passenger, school bus or hazardous
material endorsement(s).
Call the CDL Help Desk at 615-253-5221
(Nashville area only) or toll-free at 1866-849-3548 (Statewide) to make an
appointment for a CDL Skills Test.
•
You must provide your own vehicle.
•
Vehicle must be of the same class as
the license you need and must be
empty.
•
Allow 1 to 2 hours for your road skills
test.
•
If you cancel your appointment less than
24 hours in advance, you will be placed
at the end of the waiting list for future
appointments.
Be sure to bring with you:
Section 1 - Introduction
•
Your current valid medical card (see
Obtain Your D.O.T. Medical Card)
•
Any and all driver licenses, and state
issued ID’s.
•
Proof of your Social Security Number
•
Proof of U.S. Citizenship or Lawful
Permanent Resident Status
•
Two proofs of domicile and either a
Tennessee license or valid CDL from
another state.
Acceptable Documents for U.S. Citizenship
• Valid or expired U.S. Passport
•
Certified U.S./ State issued Birth
Certificate
•
U.S. Government / Federal issued
Certified Birth Certificate
•
U.S. Certificate of Birth Abroad (DS-1350
or FS-545
•
Report of Birth Abroad of a citizen of the
US. (FS-240)
•
U.S. Passport Card (Valid or Expired)
•
Certificate of Naturalization (Form N-550,
N-570, or N-578)
•
Certificate of U.S. Citizenship (Form N560 or N-561)
•
U.S. Citizen Identification Card (I-197, I17
Acceptable Documents for Lawful Permanent
Resident Status
•
Permanent Resident Alien Card (Form I551)
•
Foreign Passport with Visa or I-94
stamped “processed for I-551”
•
I-94 that is stamped with one of the
following statuses: Asylee,
Parolee/Parole, Refugee, Asylum, HPhumanitarian parolee, PIP-public interest
parolee
•
Temporary I-551 stamp on Form I-94,
Arrival/Departure Record, with
photograph of the bearer
•
U.S. Dept. of Receptions and Placement
Program Assurance Form I-94 attached
& stamped REFUGEE
•
Permanent Resident Re-Entry Permit (I327)
Page 1-10
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
•
Travel Document issued to Permanent
Residents and Refugees ( I-327 & I-571)
Acceptable Domicile Documents
•
Current utility bill including telephone,
electric, water, gas, cable, etc.
(includes “bundle” packages. Wireless
telephone bills cannot be accepted.)
•
Current vehicle registration (personal
vehicle not company vehicle) dated
within the last 12 months
•
TN vehicle title showing TN address
(can use a title or vehicle registration as
proof but not both).
•
Mortgage papers – such as the property
deed or mortgage payment coupon/book
•
Copy of Lease Agreement or Contract
with notarized signatures OR
accompanied by signed realty agency
letterhead confirming lease validity.
•
Voter registration card – NOT the
application for voter registration.
•
Military LES papers listing Tennessee
as home of record
•
Current filed Internal Revenue Service
tax return-Not tax return booklet
PROOF OF RELATIONSHIP
Domicile may also be established through proof of
relationship to a spouse, parent/child, sibling or
grandparent.
The spouse, parent/child, sibling, or grandparent
MUST hold a valid Tennessee driver license or
identification license AND be present at the Driver
Services Center with the CDL applicant upon initial
application.
The CDL applicant will be required to present two
(2) items with a Tennessee residential address
from the list of acceptable domicile documents in
the name of the immediate relative.
CDL applicants using items in the name of one of
these immediate relatives as proof of domicile
must also provide proof of the relationship such as:
•
•
•
•
NOTE: Internal Revenue Service Efiled returns must include
the W-2 form AND
confirmation page and are
acceptable and within the
previous tax year
No photocopies can be accepted!
ALL
DOCUMENTS
MUST
INCLUDE
A
TENNESSEE RESIDENTAL ADDRESS. THE
SAME TENNESSEE ADDRESS MUST BE ON
ALL DOCUMENTS PRESENTED.
Applying for a School Bus Endorsement
If you are applying for the School Bus
endorsement, you will need to provide a Form 2C
from your employer. If you will be driving for a
private school, you will need a letter from your
employer (on school letterhead) instead of the
Form 2-C. Tennessee Law requires that you be
hired by a school system before testing for a
school bus endorsement. The Form 2-C or letter
from the private school is the required proof of
employment
Section 1 - Introduction
•
Spouse = marriage certificate
Parent/Child = birth certificate(s)
showing parent and child's full
names.
Sibling = both the applicant’s AND
the sibling’s birth certificates in
order to verify they share at least
one common parent. Also the
marriage certificate for the sibling if
their current last name is different
from their birth name.
Grandparent = applicant's birth
certificate AND birth certificate of
the applicant's parent. This is
necessary to show that the
grandparent is the mother/father of
the applicant’s parent.
Step-parents or step-siblings =
applicant’s birth certificate AND the
parent’s marriage certificate
verifying the step-parent’s marriage
to one of the birth parents as
shown on the applicant’s birth
certificate. For step-siblings this
would require the birth certificate
for the applicant and sibling as well
as the parent’s marriage certificate.
Unacceptable documents include:
 Bank statements
 Wireless telephone bills
 Credit card statements
 Utility connection or deposit receipt
 Employer letters
 Extended stay hotel receipts
 Magazine subscriptions or junk mail
 Personal or business postmarked mail
Page 1-11
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
Prescription bottles
USCIS identity documents (i.e. I-551,
I-766, Visas, etc.)
Hunting, fishing or boating licenses
Letters from a public or private school or
educational institution




Fees for Common, Basic CDL’s
(Issued for 5 years)
NOTE: The length of your license is determined
by the “Drive for Five” law. It may actually be from
4 to 7 years, depending upon the date of your next
birthday evenly divided by 5. The cost is:
•
Class A:
$46 ($6 non-refundable
application fee plus $40 license fee).
•
Class B or C: $41 ($6 non-refundable
application fee plus $35 license fee).
•
Add $2.50 for each endorsement you
require, plus $18.50 for motorcycle
class.
1.8– International Registration Plan
International Fuel Tax Agreement
If you operate a CDL required vehicle in interstate
commerce, the vehicle, with few exceptions, is
required to be registered under the International
Registration Plan (IRP) and the International Fuel
Tax Agreement (IFTA). These federally mandated
programs provide for the equitable collection and
distribution of vehicle license fees and motor fuels
taxes for vehicles traveling throughout the 48
contiguous United States and 10 Canadian
provinces.
Under the IRP, jurisdictions must register
apportioned vehicles which includes issuing
license plates and cab cards or proper credentials,
calculate, collect and distribute IRP fees, audit
carriers for accuracy of reported distance and fees
and enforce IRP requirements.
Registrant responsibilities under the Plan include
applying for IRP registration with base jurisdiction,
providing proper documentation for registration,
paying appropriate IRP registration fees, properly
displaying registration credentials, maintaining
accurate distance records, and making records
available for jurisdiction review.
jurisdiction for the reporting and payment of motor
fuel use taxes.
Under the IFTA, a licensee is issued one set of
credentials which will authorize operations through
all IFTA member jurisdictions. The fuel use taxes
collected pursuant to the IFTA are calculated
based on the number of miles (kilometers) traveled
and the number of gallons (liters) consumed in the
member jurisdictions. The licensee files one
quarterly tax return with the base jurisdiction by
which the licensee will report all operations through
all IFTA member jurisdictions.
It is the base jurisdiction's responsibility to remit
the taxes collected to other member jurisdictions
and to represent the other member jurisdictions in
the tax collection process, including the
performance of audits.
An IFTA licensee must retain records to support
the information reported on the IFTA quarterly tax
return
The IRP registrant and the IFTA licensee may
be the vehicle owner or the vehicle operator.
The requirement for acquiring IRP plates for a
vehicle and IFTA license for a motor carrier is
determined by the definitions from the IRP Plan
and the IFTA for Qualified Vehicle and Qualified
Motor Vehicle:
For purposes of IRP:
A Qualified Vehicle is (except as provided
below) any Power Unit that is used or
intended for use in two or more Member
Jurisdictions and that is used for the
transportation of persons for hire or designed,
used, or maintained primarily for the
transportation of property, and:
(i) has two Axles and a gross Vehicle weight or
registered gross Vehicle weight in
excess of 26,000 pounds (11,793.401
kilograms), or
(ii) has three or more Axles, regardless of
weight, or
(iii) is used in combination, when the gross
Vehicle weight of such combination exceeds
The basic concept behind IFTA is to allow a
licensee (motor carrier) to license in a base
Section 1 - Introduction
Page 1-12
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
26,000 pounds (11,793.401 kilograms).
Fuel
While similar, the Qualified Motor Vehicle in
IFTA means a motor vehicle used, designed, or
maintained for transportation of persons or
property and:
1) Having two axles and a gross vehicle
weight or registered gross vehicle
weight exceeding 26,000 pounds or
11,797 kilograms; or
2) Having three or more axles regardless
of weight; or
3) Is used in combination, when the
weight of such combination exceeds
26,000 pounds or 11,797 kilograms gross
vehicle or registered gross vehicle
weight. Qualified Motor Vehicle does
not include recreational vehicles.
Per Section P560 of the IFTA Procedures
Manual
.300 An acceptable receipt or invoice must
include, but shall not be limited to, the
following:
.005 Date of purchase
.010 Seller's name and address
.015 Number of gallons or liters purchased;
.020 Fuel type
.025 Price per gallon or liter or total amount of
sale
.030 Unit number or other unique vehicle
identifier
.035 Purchaser's name
If the vehicle you operate is registered under IRP
and you are a motor carrier licensed under IFTA,
then you are required to comply with the
mandatory record keeping requirements for
operating the vehicle. A universally accepted
method of capturing this information is through the
completion of an Individual Vehicle Distance
Record (IVDR), sometimes referred to as a
Driver Trip Report. This document reflects the
distance traveled and fuel purchased for a vehicle
that operates interstate under apportioned (IRP)
registration and IFTA fuel tax credentials.
Although the actual format of the IVDR may vary,
the information that is required for proper record
keeping does not.
In order to satisfy the requirements for Individual
Vehicle Distance Records, these documents must
include the following information:
Distance
Per Article IV of the IRP Plan
(i) Date of trip (starting and ending)
(ii) Trip origin and destination – City and State
or Province
(iii) Route(s) of travel
(iv) Beginning and ending odometer or
hubodometer reading of the trip
(v) Total distance traveled
(vi) In-Jurisdiction distance
(vii) Power unit number or vehicle identification
number.
Section 1 - Introduction
An example of an IVDR that must be completed in
its entirety for each trip can be found in Figure 1
below. Each individual IVDR should be filled out
for only one vehicle. The rules to follow when
trying to determine how and when to log an
odometer reading are the following:
 At the beginning of the day
 When leaving the state or province
 At the end of the trip/day
Not only do the trips need to be logged, but the fuel
purchases need to be documented as well. You
must obtain a receipt for all fueling and include it with
your completed IVDR.
Make sure that any trips that you enter are always
filled out in descending order and that your trips
include all state/provinces that you traveled through
on your route.
There are different routes that a driver may take,
and most of the miles may be within one state or
province. Whether or not the distance you travel is
primarily in one jurisdiction or spread among
several jurisdictions, all information for the trip
must be recorded. This includes the dates, the
routes, odometer readings and fuel purchases.
By completing this document in full and keeping all
records required by both the IRP and the IFTA, you
will have ensured that you and your company are
in compliance with all State and Provincial laws
surrounding fuel and distance record keeping
requirements.
The IVDR serves as the source document for the
calculation of fees and taxes that are payable to
the jurisdictions in which the vehicle is operated, so
these original records must be maintained for a
minimum of four years.
Page 1-13
2011 Tennessee Commercial Driver’s License Manual
In addition, these records are subject to audit by
the taxing jurisdictions. Failure to maintain
complete and accurate records could result in
fines, penalties and suspension or revocation of
IRP registrations and IFTA licenses.
For additional information on the IRP and the
requirements related to the IRP, contact your base
jurisdiction motor vehicle department or IRP, Inc.
the official repository for the IRP. Additional
information can be found on the IRP, Inc. website
at www.irponline.org. There is a training video on
the website home page available in English,
Spanish and French.
.
For additional information on IFTA and the
requirements related to IFTA, contact the
appropriate agency in your base jurisdiction. You
will also find useful information about the
Agreement at the official repository of IFTA at
http://www.iftach.org/index.php
Figure 1 – Individual Vehicle Mileage & Fuel Record (Example)
Section 1 - Introduction
Page 1-14
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