What are the Different Types of Truck Driving Endorsments?
When you go to apply for your CDL or your learner’s permit, you may have to tell the DMV which endorsements you are interested in earning. Endorsements are simply extra permissions you can add to your CDL. Endorsements allow you to transport certain types of goods or drive specific types of vehicles that are otherwise not covered under a commercial driver’s license.
Keeping in mind that endorsements vary from state to state, learn about some of the most popular endorsements here to find out if you’d like to add any to your license
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Double and Triple Trailer Endorsement
A typical CDL only allows you to drive a single trailer vehicle. If you pass a test in driving vehicles with multiple trailers, you can get a doubles/triples endorsement. Once you have a doubles/triples endorsement on your license, you can legally drive vehicles with multiple trailers. This may allow you to take on a greater variety of trucking jobs.
In most cases, a commercial driver’s license does not allow you to drive with passengers. If it does, it only allows you to transport one or two passengers at a time. However, if you get a passenger endorsement on your license, you may be able to legally transport a higher amount of passengers. This endorsement may qualify you for team driving jobs.
With a commercial driver’s license, you can only transport dry goods. If you want to transport liquids of any kind, you need a tanker vehicle endorsement. This endorsement requires more training and education, as you must learn how to load your vehicle, how to ensure that your load is safe for transport, and how to handle any emergencies or leaks that may occur while you are on the road.
A hazardous materials endorsement (also known as a HAZMAT endorsement) can open up many job opportunities for you, depending on where you live. Many companies have hazardous materials to be transported, but there may not be enough HAZMAT drivers to meet this need. You must qualify for HAZMAT certification at a federal level by submitting fingerprints and passing a background check. As is the case with other endorsements, you must meet more stringent education requirements to qualify for a HAZMAT endorsement on your license.
Interstate CDL Endorsement
There are two types of commercial driver’s licenses: intrastate and interstate. In many states, interstate driving is an endorsement that you can have added to any class of license. This permits you to drive over state lines and transport loads to other states. To qualify for an interstate license, you must be at least 21 years old. This is a federal requirement, so it does not matter which state you live in.
Your state may have more or fewer endorsements, depending on where you live. We recommend contacting your state’s DMV to find out what endorsements are available to you and how you can add endorsements to your license. Taking this extra step can change the future of your trucking career.
Contact the trucking schools on our site to learn more about how you can earn endorsements on your CDL today.