A commercial driver’s license (CDL) replaces your standard driver’s license and allows you to drive a commercial motor vehicle (CMV). In order to earn your license, you will need to meet certain criteria. These include some requirements that are standardized across states and others that are specific for getting an Arizona CDL.
If you want to earn your license and start a truck driving career, here is what you need to know:
When You Need a CDL (Federal Regulations)
The federal government, specifically the Department of Transportation (DOT) and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), determines when individuals need to possess a CDL. This applies in Arizona and across the country. There are different types of CDLs. At HDS Truck Driving Institute (HDS truck driving school) our programs can help you earn a Class A or a Class B license.
A Class A CDL is necessary to drive a CMV with a gross combination weight rating (GCWR) or gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 26,001 pounds or more with a towing capacity of over 10,000 pounds. A Class B CDL is required to drive a CMV with a GCWR or GVWR of 26,001 pounds or more which has a towing capacity of less than 10,000 pounds.
Earning an Arizona CDL
In order to earn your CDL in Arizona, you must meet federal and state requirements.
Federal CDL Requirements
To get a commercial license, you must be at least 21 years old to drive across state lines. For intrastate travel, the age requirement is 18 years old. You will need to pass a background check and can be temporarily or permanently disqualified if you have certain offenses on your record. The FMCSA lists these offenses and the length of time you will be unable to hold a CDL for each offense on their website.
Arizona CDL Requirements
Arizona follows national standards and the requirements to obtain your license in Arizona are similar to the requirements in other states. You must first obtain your commercial learner’s permit (CLP) by passing a knowledge test. This exam covers important safety information related to driving a CMV. To get your CDL after earning your CLP, you must pass a skills test driving a vehicle of the class that you intend to operate.
All commercial drivers in the State of Arizona must keep a Medical Examiner Certificate on file with the Motor Vehicle Department (MVD). You will need to complete a DOT physical every 24 months to keep your license. In some cases, the doctor will require you to be examined more frequently. This ensures you meet health requirements set by the DOT for commercial drivers.
Obtaining your Arizona CDL also requires proof of residency. You will need to provide two documents showing a valid Arizona address. The MVD has a full list of acceptable documents in their CDL manual. You must also prove that you are a United States citizen or a legal permanent resident. Documents that establish your citizen status are also listed in the CDL manual.
Earn Your CDL With HDS
When you earn your CDL by attending HDS truck driving school, we do more than ensure you meet the minimum requirements. We give you valuable tools and knowledge to help you start your trucking career.