Proposed driver training rule coming soon

| 8/22/2007

The days of getting a CDL without ever getting behind the wheel may very well be numbered.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration submitted a notice of proposed rulemaking on minimum driver training requirements for review by the Office of Management and Budget on Aug. 13.

The rulemaking is a result of a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. The December 2005 decision sent the minimum training requirements for entry-level drivers back to the agency because it did not require any time behind the wheel.

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association and two safety advocate groups filed the federal lawsuit against FMCSA in 2004 because the regulation at that time did not require any training behind the wheel.

Apparently, time behind the wheel isn’t ignored in the proposed regulation under review. According to the abstract on the notice, the proposal seeks to require behind-the-wheel training for those who must hold a commercial driver’s license to operate commercial motor vehicles.

The rulemaking will consider the effectiveness of CMV driver training in reducing crashes, the appropriate types and levels of behind-the-wheel training that should be mandated, and related costs. 

Reviews by the White House Office of Management and Budget typically take around 90 days.