Final Driver Training Rule Has Been Delayed For 2 Years

The Final Ruling that will set the standard of training for drivers applying for a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) has been delayed for 2 years.

Despite the delay, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) insists the new curriculum and training will still take effect on February 7, 2020. Driver Trainers and State Driver Licensing Agencies (SDLAs) will have until February 7, 2022 to comply.

Driver Training Rule

The Driver Training Rule is officially titled Minimum Training Requirements for Entry-Level Commercial Motor Vehicle Operators. This rule requires drivers to update their driver certification information in the FMCSA database and comply with the new training standard before allowing CDL testing.

The proposed ruling, established in late 2016 requires schools to provide:

  • 31 Theory Courses
  • 19 Behind-the-wheel Skills Courses

Students must pass all 19 skill assessments and score at least 80% on their theory assessment to be eligible to test for a CDL with the state.

Training providers must be registered in the Training Provider Registry. Trainers will have 2 years to comply with uploading the driver training certifications as required by the new ruling. SDLAs also have 2 years to comply with checking that CDL applicants have completed their training.

“The agency proposes to extend the compliance date at this time so that SDLAs and other stakeholders can take the proposed delay into account when setting budget and resource allocation priorities,” FMCSA stated in the notice.

The 2 year extension is also due to a lag in IT infrastructure that will allow driver certifications to be uploaded and sent.

“ATA strongly supports the ELDT requirements established in FMCSA’s 2016 final rule,” Abigail Potter, ATA’s Manager of Safety & Occupational Health Policy, told FreightWaves. “However, ATA is concerned that delaying major aspects of the ELDT requirements could have a significant impact on the enforcement and the effectiveness of the rule’s intended goal.”

Public Comment Period

There is a public comment period of 30 days after publication in the Federal Register. The public comment period ends August 19, 2019.

To see the notice of proposed rulemaking; extension of compliance date, click here.

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