In order to operate a truck for commercial purposes in the state of Florida, an individual must go through the proper training and obtain the necessary license they need before they are permitted to get behind the wheel. The license that is needed is called a CDL, or commercial driver’s license. In order to qualify to apply for a CDL, an applicant must have their Operators License and pass the vision requirements. An applicant must also be at least 18 years of age to apply. In the event they are under the age of 21, they will be restricted to intrastate commerce only [Source: Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles].

 

What is the difference between intrastate and interstate commerce?

 

As we mentioned above, drivers who are under the age of 21 and are looking to obtain their CDL will only be permitted to operate on intrastate roadways. Now, you may have heard of interstate commerce as well so to help you better understand the difference between the two, we are defining each for you below.

 

  • Intrastate commerce is when you would “perform trade, traffic, or transportation exclusively in your business’s domicile state.” That means you would be limited to only operating the commercial truck within the state of Florida and wouldn’t be permitted to travel outside of it.

 

  • Interstate commerce is when “your trade, traffic, or transportation is one of the following:
  1. Between a place in a state and a place outside of such state.
  2. Between two places in a state through another state or a place outside of the U.S.
  3. Between two places in a state as part of trade, traffic, or transportation originating or terminating outside the state or the U.S.”

 

[Source: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)].

 

Now in terms of requirements, some of the others you must fulfill in order to obtain your CDL in Florida are based on the type of license you are looking to acquire.

If you’re applying for a Class A license, then you are going to be operating a truck or truck combination that weighs 26,001 lbs. or more, and towing a vehicle/unit over 10,000 lbs. In order to receive a Class A license, you must take and pass the following tests:

 

  • General Knowledge test
  • Combinations vehicle test
  • Air Brakes
  • Pre-Trip
  • Basic Skills
  • CDL Road Test
  • Applicable exams for desired endorsements

 

If you are applying for a Class B license, that means you will be operating a straight truck that is 26,001 lbs. or more. The tests you will need to take and pass include:

 

  • General Knowledge test
  • Air Brakes (if applicable)
  • Pre-Trip
  • Basic Skills
  • CDL Road Test
  • Applicable exams for desired endorsements

 

Now, if you plan to operate a commercial truck that will be transporting hazardous material or a vehicle that is designed to transport more than 15 people including the driver with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating of less than 26,001 lbs., then you will need to apply or a Class C CDL license. These are the tests you must take and pass for this particular license:

 

  • General Knowledge test
  • Air Brakes (if applicable)
  • Pre-Trip
  • Basic Skills
  • CDL Road Test
  • Applicable exams for desired endorsements

 

There are other requirements that must be met in order to receive your CDL license and it is best you contact the FMCSA to find out what these are as they vary depending on your circumstances.

Now, if you have been offered a position to operate a truck for commercial purposes but you have yet to fulfill the requirements the FLHSMV and the FMCSA have stipulated, it is best you don’t begin driving, even if your employer is willing to allow you, as it puts multiple parties at risk. The fact is, there is a lot of knowledge a driver must acquire as well as training they must go through before they are allowed to get behind the wheel of such a large vehicle.

While most companies comply with state and federal regulations, there are some out there that don’t and allow drivers to operate vehicles while in violation of the law. Not only does this put you at risk, but also the other motorists who are traveling around you. In the event you have been involved in a truck accident recently in Jacksonville, FL and weren’t legally permitted to be operating the vehicle, you may want to consult with a Jacksonville, FL truck crash attorney to find out what your legal rights are in the matter. In fact, if you were involved in a wreck with a truck and did receive your CDL license, you will still want to speak with a lawyer at your earliest convenience.

Jacksonville, FL truck accident attorneys

If you have questions regarding the recent truck accident you were involved in, contact the lawyers at Edwards & Ragatz, P.A. located in Jacksonville as they are more than capable of answering them for you.

Truck accident cases tend to be some of the more complex types of cases out there so it is best you receive the information you need from reputable lawyers who are familiar with this field of the law. If you are ready to speak with an attorney now regarding your recent collision that occurred in Jacksonville, FL, contact Edwards & Ragatz, P.A. to schedule a free case review.

 

You can reach Edwards & Ragatz, P.A. at:

 

4401 Salisbury Road, Suite 200

Jacksonville, FL 32216

904-399-1609