What is the impact that the entry-level driver training (ELDT) final rule will have on existing State ELDT requirements?
The rule generally does not replace or otherwise supersede State-based entry-level driver training (ELDT) requirements that exceed these minimum Federal standards when an entry-level driver obtains training in that State. The question of which, if any, additional State-based ELDT-related requirements apply to the applicant will be determined by where he/she obtains their behind-the-wheel (BTW) and/or theory training for the Class A or Class B commercial driver’s license (CDL) and/or the passenger (P), school bus (S) or hazardous materials (H) endorsements. For example, if a State requires that entry-level drivers complete a CDL training program with a prescribed minimum number of BTW hours, a driver-trainee who is domiciled there and obtains BTW training there must comply with that requirement in order to take the State-administered skills test. Similarly, driver-trainees who take theory training in their State of domicile would be required to comply with any State-based requirements applicable to theory training. The final rule does not prohibit driver-trainees from obtaining training outside their State of domicile if they so choose.
What is the specific role that the State Driver Licensing Agencies (SDLAs) will play as detailed in the entry-level driver training (ELDT) final rule?
The rule requires that the state driver licensing agency (SDLA) verify entry-level driver training (ELDT) completion before allowing the applicant to take a skills test for a Class A or Class B commercial driver’s license (CDL), or a passenger (P) or school bus (S) endorsement, or a knowledge test prior to obtaining the hazardous materials (H) endorsement. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) intends to provide the relevant driver-specific ELDT certification information to the SDLAs. At a minimum, this information will include the training provider’s unique ID number (assigned upon initial listing on the Training Provider Registry (TPR), the date the applicant completed applicable ELDT, and the type of ELDT the applicant received. The Agency intends to transmit the training certification information as soon as FMCSA confirms the information is complete.