The Texas Department of Public Safety is reminding applicants for a commercial driver's license (CDL) that Entry Level Driver Training requirements begin Monday.
Anyone who is either applying for a Class A or Class B CDL for the first time, anyone upgrading an existing CDL to a Class A or B, or getting a school bus, passenger, or hazardous materials endorsement for the first time, must meet the new federal requirements.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will oversee the new regulations, designed to improve highway safety. Entry-level drivers of commercial motor vehicles must now complete minimum federal training requirements before being permitted to take certain CDL tests.
There are commercial driving schools in North Texas that are already approved to provide the training.
Marion Skinner, the CEO of Texas Advancement Career Centers, said the new federal requirements will be a game-changer in the industry.
“A lot of these companies are actually trying to have us do all their employees, so we’re telling everyone, if you need this training, you have to get in line fast. It’s just going crazy right now with all these companies needing all their drivers to be trained,” said Skinner. “When it comes to these drivers, I don’t want them to think, it’s more training for us, we just have to look at the bright side. They want us better prepared when we get out there. A lot of people actually appreciate that.”
Skinner has schools in Mesquite, Houston, and in San Antonio, and is partnered with the Texas Workforce Commission.