Do You Have To Be 21 To Become A Truck Driver?

Topic 1689 | Page 1

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Rebekah R.'s Comment
member avatar

I have been seeing on most of the apps that i try to fill out that you need to be 21 to become a truck drive. So i was wondering if it possible to become a truck driver at 18? See I'm a senior in high school and would like to become a truck driver right out of high school, can anyone tell me if this is possible?

Gerald H. AKA Doc's Comment
member avatar

well the answer to the question is yes you can become a truck driver at 18 but you will only be allowed to drive in your home state. so unless you get with a local company who stays in state, in order to use your license later on when you turn 21 you may have to spend more money to take a refresher course to get hired on with a company. good luck with your decision. Doc

Daniel B.'s Comment
member avatar

Minimum age to get a CDL is 18.

However, you must be at least 21 to cross state lines. So the only companies that can hire you are local companies that never go into a different state. These are called local jobs. Unfortunately, local jobs usually require at least 1 year of experience before they'll even look at you.

So I'm sorry to bear the bad news but there's pretty much zero chance to get a driving job driving a commercial vehicle for you.

But I do have recommendations. First of all, you have three years. Use that time to study.

Secondly, just because you can't be a driver doesn't mean you can't work with them. I strongly suggest you find a warehouse job. Find a job where you're near trucks. When I was 20 I got a job at a warehouse loading and unloading trucks. Even though I wasn't a driver, I had the opportunity to constantly chat with drivers.

And the HUGE advantage it gave me is that I used to work at a shipper/receiver. So I know how it goes. I know both sides of the industry. When I come for a pickup, I know how to do their job. I learned how to load a trailer properly because I loaded several hundred of them. Working at that job gave me the advantage to know if they're loading me right. It gave me the knowledge to identify if they know what they're doing or not.

So even though you can't be a driver right now. That doesn't mean you can't do things that will benefit you in your future. Get a forklift license and get OOSHA certified. I had three forklift licenses from three different jobs and I also had an OOSHA license. Driving a forklift will introduce you to power equipment.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Dave D. (Armyman)'s Comment
member avatar

I have been seeing on most of the apps that i try to fill out that you need to be 21 to become a truck drive. So i was wondering if it possible to become a truck driver at 18? See I'm a senior in high school and would like to become a truck driver right out of high school, can anyone tell me if this is possible?

If you are lucky, you might be able to get a job at a local Farmer's Service Coop hauling grain, but no HAZMAT , which includes fuel, and again INTRASTATE only.

Dave

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

Intrastate:

The act of purchasers and sellers transacting business while keeping all transactions in a single state, without crossing state lines to do so.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Yeah, you would be best off waiting until you're 21 to get started in trucking. There are almost no opportunities for anyone under the age of 21 with a CDL.

My advice would be to use the next few years to pursue a career you think you would enjoy. If it works out - great! If not, you can always get into trucking. Either way you'll wind up with a solid career at a young age and that's more than the vast majority of people can say.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
Richard O.'s Comment
member avatar

In my younger life I worked for a beverage distributor. It was a pretty large company in Atlanta and they had their own CDL training program. At that time they would hire at 19 and pay all expenses to get your CDL. The work was very physical. Unloading 1000+ cases of product each day in all weather conditions. Maneuvering in very close quarters.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
Robert K.'s Comment
member avatar

You can legally get a CDL at18 but your better off waiting till your 21 not many places will hire you if your under 21.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
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