Endorsements: From Day 1, Or Later?

Topic 24714 | Page 1

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Truth S.'s Comment
member avatar

I’d like to drive, at some point in time, using endorsements like HazMat , Tanker ... but I see jobs listed for tanker drivers requiring 18 mos experience etc.

Should I just get my basic permit, to start, and then study for and attempt the written tests for endorsements later? Or go for all I can from the start?

What about the endorsement(s) where special driving tests are required?

Much appreciation for any and all replies

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

PJ's Comment
member avatar

Welcome, By your post I’m not sure in the process of getting into the industry you are. If just starting you just need a basic permit to start with to go to school. Endorsements can come after school. All of them except hazmat you just take the written tests. All states are different, so check with your individual state if they allow them when you take the permit test. As for Hazmat you must go through the TSA screening and fingerprinting and have their clearance before a state will allow you to take the test.

Tankers are a different breed of animal. I know of no company that hire new drivers, because it is dangerous. My company had a 2 year driving experience requirement but recently dropped it to 1 year.

Some dry van/reefer and flatbed companies load totes in/on those trailers and you must have the tanker endorsement, that changed a few years ago.

Depending what company you go to, it is possible to transfer between divisions. Schneider and prime both have tanker divisions as well as their box divisions.

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

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Steve L.'s Comment
member avatar

I got money me when I took the permit test. All I needed was right here on this site.

So, as soon as I started driving dry van , I was able to haul hazmat and tankers (or totes that required the tanker endorsement).

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

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.
Tractor Man's Comment
member avatar

Test for them all at once, maybe short of the hazmat. They are easy, even easier if you use The High Road. It will be a PITA to make the time to get them later. Just my .02.

good-luck.gif

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

Rainy 's Comment
member avatar

I took my permit exam at my company and did tanker because prime wants tankers for liquid totes driven by reefer. You cant transfer a Hazmat from state to state, so i had to wait for hazmat until i went back home. almost everyone i knew who got hazmat right away got hazmat as their first solo load once they upgraded. i was nervous enough and didnt want to burden myself with hazmat as a newly solo driver. It is only a $50 bonus at my company so it didnt seem worth the hassle considering the horrible situations i got into.

rofl-3.gif

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

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

I always recommend getting all of your endorsements right away. In the beginning you're in study and classroom mode. You'll be studying for your permit and you'll have to go to the DMV to take the written tests for the permit. The study time and test taking time required for getting your endorsements is pretty small. So it makes sense to do it all at once.

Once you begin the actual driving, backing, and pre-trip inspection portion of the training things get far more difficult. Then before long you're going to be on the road with a trainer. The last thing in the world you're going to want to do during these phases is spend more time studying and taking more time out of your day to go back to the DMV for more written tests.

So in the beginning, get all of the studying and written test taking out of the way for the CDL permit and all of the CDL Endorsements.

Most states won't let you get the Hazmat until you have your actual CDL license, but check with your state and get it as soon as possible.

Also keep in mind that the overwhelming majority of Hazmat loads you'll get from the major carriers aren't what you would really consider hazardous. It's normally just things like house paint, cleaning chemicals, and other minor things like that.

Pre-trip Inspection:

A pre-trip inspection is a thorough inspection of the truck completed before driving for the first time each day.

Federal and state laws require that drivers inspect their vehicles. Federal and state inspectors also may inspect your vehicles. If they judge a vehicle to be unsafe, they will put it “out of service” until it is repaired.

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.

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

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

B_Dawg's Comment
member avatar

I got all my endorsements at once, and that's what I recommend. all the information is fresh in your mind and even though you may not need them, it's good to have them.

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