Driving a commercial motor vehicle takes a special skills set and knowledge that are different from those required to drive a passenger vehicle. You need to obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL) if you want to operate such a vehicle. If you posses a CDL, you can drive a truck, a semi truck, a bus, a van or a taxicab. CDL exams are obviously not the same as exams for a regular driver’s license. That’s why you have to get familiar with what a CDL exam is all about and find out what knowledge you need in order to pass it.
First of all, you have to know that there are three different CDL classes: A, B and C, depending on the gross vehicle weight. Class A is for a combination of vehicles weighing 26,001 pounds or more, Class B for single vehicles weighing 26,001 pounds or more, and Class C refers to vehicles that transport more than 16 passengers and are not included in neither of the previous classes.
Special endorsements are required in order to operate a certain type of commercial vehicles. There are specific endorsements for a vehicle transporting hazardous materials, a tank vehicle, a school bus, and for vehicles with double or triple trailers.
A CDL can be obtained by passing a written test, as well as a road test, where you have to perform various maneuvers with the same vehicle type you want to obtain a license for. The written portion of the test consists of several sections, dedicated to hazardous materials knowledge, general knowledge, air brakes and so on.
The best way to prepare for the CDL test is taking online practice tests. They will help you find out every specific information that is required to pass a CDL test. By taking practice tests, you will get insight into requirements for different hazardous materials endorsements, safety regulations, how to handle coupling and uncoupling double or triple trailers. CDL tests are very difficult, and you will have far better chances for passing it if you prepare in advance by taking practice tests. They are based on the actual CDL exam questions.