CDL Practice Tests For Hazardous Materials

Our free CDL practice tests for Hazardous Materials are designed to help test your knowledge of the CDL Manual and sharpen your skills for taking the CDL permit and endorsement exams. They are not designed to teach you the knowledge necessary to pass the exams. Please do not try to memorize these CDL practice tests in order to get your CDL. There's a better way.

Our High Road CDL Training Program is by far the easiest and most effective way to learn the materials necessary for passing your written CDL exams and preparing for a great start to your career. We strongly suggest using the High Road (which is 100% free!) to learn the CDL manual before using our practice questions to test your knowledge.

CDL Practice Tests For Hazardous Materials

About The Hazardous Materials CDL Exam

The Hazardous Materials written CDL Exam is required to obtain your hazardous materials endorsement on your CDL. You must have a Commercial Drivers License (CDL) with a hazardous materials endorsement before you drive any size vehicle that is used to transport hazardous material as defined in 49 CFR 383.5. You must pass a written test about the regulations and requirements to get this endorsement.

  • Bulk Tank Loading, Unloading and Marking
  • Driver Responsibilities
  • Driving and Parking Rules
  • Communications Rules
  • Emergencies
  • Loading and Unloading

Hazardous Materials Transportation - Shipper's Responsibility

The Shipper

  • Sends products from one place to another by truck, rail, vessel or airplane.
  • Provides correct placards.
  • Packages, marks and labels the materials, prepares shipping papers, provides emergency response information and supplies placards.
  • Certifies on the shipping paper that the shipment has been prepared according to the rules (unless you are pulling cargo tanks supplied by you or your employer).

The shipper also uses the hazardous materials regulations to determine the product’s:

  • Proper shipping name.
  • Hazard class.
  • Identification number.
  • Packing group.
  • Correct packaging.
  • Correct label and markings.

Carrier And Driver Responsibility

The Carrier

  • Takes the shipment from the shipper to its destination.
  • Prior to transportation, checks that the shipper correctly described, marked, labeled and otherwise prepared the shipment for transportation.
  • Refuses improper shipments.
  • Reports accidents and incidents involving hazardous materials to the proper government agency.

The Driver

  • Makes sure the shipper has identified, marked and labeled the hazardous materials properly.
  • Refuses leaking packages and shipments.
  • Placards vehicle when loading, if required.
  • Safely transports the shipment without delay.
  • Follows all special rules about transporting hazardous materials.
  • Keeps hazardous materials shipping papers and emergency response information in the proper place.

Drivers must keep hazardous materials shipping papers in one of three ways:

  • In a pouch on the driver's door
  • In clear view within immediate reach while the seat belt is fastened while driving
  • On the driver's seat when out of the vehicle


Placards are used to warn others of hazardous materials. Placards are signs put on the outside of a vehicle and on bulk packages, which identify the hazard class of the cargo.

A placarded vehicle must have at least four identical placards. They are put on the front, rear, and both sides of the vehicle. Placards must be readable from all four directions. They are at least 10 3/4 inches square, square-on-point, in a diamond shape.

Cargo tanks and other bulk packaging display the identification number of their contents on placards or orange panels or white square-on-point displays that are the same size as placards.

The Shipping Paper

The shipping paper describes a shipment. A shipping paper for hazardous materials must include:

  • Page numbers if the shipping paper has more than one page. The first page must tell the total number of pages
  • A proper shipping description for each hazardous material.
  • A shipper's certification, signed by the shipper, saying the shipment was prepared according to the regulations.

The Item Description

If a shipping paper describes both hazardous and non-hazardous products, the hazardous materials will be either:

  • Described first.
  • Highlighted in a contrasting color.
  • Identified by an "X" placed before the shipping name in a column captioned "HM.” The letters "RQ" may be used instead of "X" if a reportable quantity is present in one package.

Recognizing Hazardous Materials

Learn to recognize shipments of hazardous materials. To find out if the shipment includes hazardous materials, look at the shipping paper. Does it have:

  • An entry with a proper shipping name, hazard class and identification number?
  • A highlighted entry or one with an X or RQ in the hazardous materials column?
  • What business is the shipper in (e.g., paint dealer, chemical supply, scientific supply house, pest control or agricultural supplier, explosives, munitions or fireworks dealer).
  • Are there tanks with diamond labels or placards on the premises?
  • What type of package is being shipped? Cylinders and drums are often used for hazardous materials shipments.
  • Is a hazard class label, proper shipping name or identification number on the package?
  • Are there any handling precautions?

Placarding Rules & Regulations

Attach the appropriate placards to the vehicle before you drive it. You are only allowed to move an improperly placarded vehicle during an emergency in order to protect life or property. Placards must appear on both sides and both ends of the vehicle. Each placard must be:

  • Easily seen from the direction it faces.
  • Placed so the words or numbers are level and read from left to right.
  • At least 3 inches away from any other markings.
  • Kept clear of attachments or devices such as ladders, doors and tarpaulins.
  • Kept clean and undamaged so that the color, format and message are easily seen.
  • Be affixed to a background of contrasting color.
  • The use of “Drive Safely” and other slogans is prohibited.

The front placard may be on the front of the tractor or the front of the trailer. To decide which placards to use, you need to know:

  • The hazard class of the materials.
  • The amount of hazardous materials shipped.
  • The total weight of all classes of hazardous materials in your vehicle.

Questions You Should Know About Hazardous Materials

  • 1. Shippers package in order to (fill in the blank) the material.
  • 2. Driver placard their vehicle to (fill in the blank) the risk.
  • 3. What three things do you need to know to decide which placards (if any) you need?
  • 4. A hazardous materials identification number must appear on the (fill in the blank) and on the (fill in the blank). The identification number must also appear on cargo tanks and other bulk packaging.
  • 5. Where must you keep shipping papers describing hazardous materials?

Parking a Placarded Vehicle Not Transporting Division 1.1, 1.2 or 1.3 Explosives

You may park a placarded vehicle (not laden with explosives) within 5 feet of the traveled part of the road only if your work requires it. Do so only briefly. Someone must always watch the vehicle when parked on a public roadway or shoulder. Do not uncouple a trailer and leave it with hazardous materials on a public street. Do not park within 300 feet of an open fire.

Attending Parked Vehicles

The person attending a placarded vehicle must:

  • Be in the vehicle, awake and not in the sleeper berth or within 100 feet of the vehicle and have it within clear view.
  • Be aware of the hazards of the materials being transported.
  • Know what to do in emergencies.
  • Be able to move the vehicle, if needed.

Hazmat Route Restrictions

Some states and counties require permits to transport hazardous materials or wastes. They may limit the routes you can use. Local rules about routes and permits change often. It is your job as driver to find out if you need permits or must use special routes. Make sure you have all needed papers before starting.

If you work for a carrier, ask your dispatcher about route restrictions or permits. If you are an independent trucker and are planning a new route, check with state agencies where you plan to travel. Some localities prohibit transportation of hazardous materials through tunnels, over bridges or other roadways. Always check before you start.

Whenever placarded, avoid heavily populated areas, crowds, tunnels, narrow streets and alleys. Take other routes, even if inconvenient, unless there is no other way. Never drive a placarded vehicle near open fires unless you can safely pass without stopping.

Definitions Related To Hazmat Hauling

Bulk packaging - Packaging, other than a vessel or a barge, including a transport vehicle or freight container, in which hazardous materials are loaded with no intermediate form of containment and which has:

  • 1. A maximum capacity greater than 450 L (119 gallons) as a receptacle for a liquid;
  • 2. A maximum net mass greater than 400 kg (882 pounds) or a maximum capacity greater than 450 L (119 gallons) as a receptacle for a solid; or
  • 3. A water capacity greater than 454 kg (1000 pounds) as a receptacle for a gas as defined in Sec. 173.115

Consignee - The business or person to whom a shipment is delivered.

Division - A subdivision of a hazard class.

EPA - U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

FMCSR - The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.

Portable Tank - Bulk packaging (except a cylinder having a water capacity of 1,000 pounds or less) designed primarily to be loaded onto, or on or temporarily attached to a transport vehicle or ship and equipped with skids, mountings or accessories to facilitate handling of the tank by mechanical means. It does not include a cargo tank, tank car, multiunit tank car tank or trailer carrying 3AX, 3AAX or 3T cylinders.

Reportable Quantity - The quantity specified in Column 2 of the Appendix to Sec. 172.101 for any material identified in Column 1 of the Appendix.

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