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Do New York Truck Drivers Need More Training?

man sitting in the driver's seat of a large truck with the door open

New Training Requirements Implemented for CDL Applicants

As of February 7, 2022, all drivers who are applying for their Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) for the first time will be required to complete an entry-level driver training (ELDT) course prior to their road test. This is anticipated to be a step in a positive direction, with the MTC Truck Driver Training Safety and Compliance Manager noting, “Standardized training and clear expectations will save lives and improve safety for the motoring public as a whole”

Although the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) first ruled on these regulations in 2016, this is the first time that a standardized program of this nature has gone into effect.

What Does the ELDT Entail?

As outlined in the introductory presentation, the ELDT consists of two training components: theory and behind-the-wheel. While the former requires lectures/demonstrations, simulations, and an assessment that requires an 80% to pass, the latter is actual road training (not simulated), and proficiency will be at the discretion of the instructor, not based on hours.

Topics covered in the theory portion include:

  • Basic operation and safe operating procedures
  • Advanced operation procedures
  • Vehicle systems and malfunction reporting
  • Non-driving activities (like Hours of Service regulations)

It’s important to note that these trainings can only be instructed by someone certified through the Training Provider Registry (TPR). This way, the FMCSA can better regulate what is being taught and certify that a driver has proof of completion.

Who Do These Regulations Apply to?

The ELDT is required for all drivers looking to:

  • Obtain a CDL (Class A or B)
  • Upgrade an existing Class B CDL to a Class A
  • Obtain a school bus (S), passenger (P), or hazardous material (H) endorsement

However, this policy does not require drivers who already have these certifications to retroactively complete this training. Those who obtained a Commercial Learner’s Permit (CLP) prior to the implementation date are also exempt so long as they obtain their CDL before their CLP expires.

New York State’s New Program

Along with these new regulations, beginning on May 14, 2022, New York will begin implementing a Class A Young Adult Training Program for 18 to 20-year-olds to work towards obtaining their CDL. Previously, no one under 21 was eligible to apply for a Class A, only a Class B with intrastate travel restrictions. However, completion of this training program will still restrict drivers under 21 years of age to only trips within New York.

The Queens attorneys at Davidoff Law & Associates are dedicated to helping improve roadway safety by holding negligent truck drivers accountable for the injuries they cause. If you or a loved one have been injured in a truck accident, we can help. Call (888) 211-1116 to get in touch with a member of our team today.

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