CDL Training Basic Skills – What You Need to Know

CDL Training Basic Skills – What You Need to Know

Most people who want to get a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) know that they must pass the CDL test. But what does a driver need to know to pass the CDL test? First, a driver must have a normal state driver’s license. Then, they must pass several written computer-based tests at their state department of motor vehicles.

The minimum written tests for a typical Class A (tractor-trailer with air brakes) CDL permit (CDLP) are the General Knowledge test, the Air Brake test, and the Combination Vehicle test. Each of these tests requires the student driver to study the state CDL manual, and learn basic information and concepts. SAGE students can use an awesome online tool to help them study called ProDriverU, which is easy to use, has lots of photos and diagrams, and is self-paced, with hundreds of learning modules and practice tests. It makes getting your CDLP easier than ever!

To get a permit, the driver must also be able to pass the medical exam required by the U.S. Department of Transportation. SAGE can help arrange that exam with a local doctor, and answer most questions about health/medical requirements.

Once a driver has the CDLP, they can drive a truck as long as a licensed CDL holder is in the truck with them! This is how SAGE can help you get a CDL, since our instructors help you learn the behind the wheel driving skills step by step. A driver can take the CDL test after they have held their CDLP for 14 days.

What specific topics or areas are covered in the General Knowledge test for the CDL?

The General Knowledge test for the CDL typically covers a wide range of topics essential for safe and effective commercial truck driving. These topics often include basic vehicle operation, inspection procedures, safe driving practices, cargo management, emergency protocols, and federal regulations for commercial drivers. The exact content can vary by state, so it’s advised to review the state-specific CDL manual for precise details.

Are there any prerequisites or qualifications required to enroll in the SAGE program or to use the ProDriverU online tool?

While the blog post does not specify prerequisites for SAGE or ProDriverU, programs like these generally require participants to have a valid standard driver’s license as a basic prerequisite. Additional requirements might include being of a certain age (often 18 for intrastate and 21 for interstate commercial driving), having a clean driving record, and passing a physical examination. It’s best to consult directly with SAGE or check the ProDriverU website for specific enrollment criteria.

What are the next steps after passing the CDL test?

After passing the CDL test, the next steps typically involve completing any additional requirements set by the state or the federal Department of Transportation (DOT). This might include submitting a self-certification of medical status and, if required, passing any additional endorsements tests (e.g., for hazardous materials, passenger vehicles, or school buses). Once all requirements are met, the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) will issue the CDL. Drivers may then seek employment in commercial driving, and some may need to obtain additional endorsements depending on the specific type of driving job they are interested in.