truck accident lawyers in Cleveland, OH

Although many are under the impression that operators of large trucks are required to abide by CDL requirements, this isn’t always true.

Truck drivers who are required to obtain their CDL (Commercial Driver’s License) go through rigorous coursework and training so that they are qualified, prepared, and capable of operating a large vehicle that is used for commerce. Sometimes, these vehicles are required to carry hazardous materials while other times, they are transporting heavy loads weighing thousands and thousands of pounds, both of which suffice as reasons for truckers to obtain the training and knowledge needed to operate these types of vehicles. Now, although most people assume that anyone who is responsible for operating a large truck is required to obtain their CDL, there are actually truckers out there who are exempt from CDL requirements.

So which types of vehicles do not require the driver to meet CDL requirements in the state of Ohio? According to the Ohio Department of Public Safety, a driver who operates one of these types of vehicles would be exempt:

1.     Farm Trucks

The farm truck must be operated by a farmer as a means of transportation to or from a farm that is no more than 150 miles away. The truck may not be used “in the operation of a motor transportation company.”

2.     Fire Equipment Transportation Trucks

Trucks that are responsible for transporting equipment that is used by the “fire department, volunteer or non-volunteer fire company, fire district or joint fire district” is not subject to CDL requirements.

3.    Public Safety Vehicles

A vehicle that is used to “provide transportation or emergency medical service for ill or injured people.”

4.    Recreational Vehicles

Only vehicles the Ohio Revised Code 4501.01 identifies as a “recreational vehicle” and is used “exclusively for purposes other than engaging in business or profit.”

5.    Commercial Motor Vehicles (CMV)

Although most CMV operators are required to abide by CDL requirements, the following are exempt:

  • CMV’s that are used “by local government employees to remove snow or ice from a roadway by plowing, sanding or salting.”
  • Non-CDL licensed employees are permitted to operate these vehicles if “the local government determines a snow or ice emergency exists and additional help is needed.”
  • They are part of an “eligible unit of local government [such as] a village, township, or county with a population of not more than 3,000 persons according to the most recent federal census.”

6.    Vehicle Operated for Military Purposes

A member or uniformed employee of the armed forces of the U.S., reserve components, or the Ohio National Guard can operate these vehicles without needing to comply with the state’s CDL requirements. Keep in mind this does not “apply to United States reserve technicians.”

7.     Non-Business Commercial Motor Vehicles

A CMV that is not being used in commerce and is “not regulated by the Public Utilities Commission” are exempt from CDL requirements.

8.    Vehicles Designed for Transporting Goods

The would be an operator of a vehicle that is used “for non-commercial transport of goods or personal property.”


It is important that you are aware of this information as those who are not required to obtain a CDL are also not bound by the rules and regulations a CDL carrier is subjected to abide by. This means that if you were involved in an accident with one of the following types of vehicles mentioned above, you wouldn’t be able to use certain laws pertaining to CDL holders as support for your case.

trucking accident lawyer in Cleveland, OH

If you recently sustained an injury in a truck accident in Ohio and are looking for a trucking accident attorney who can help you recover the maximum amount of compensation you are entitled to, contact attorney Murray D. Bilfield today.

However, if you did engage in an accident with any type of large truck in OH, whether it was a firetruck, emergency response truck, or semi, and you are looking to recover compensation for the damage the operator of that vehicle has caused, you will want to speak with a Cleveland, OH truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. OH truck crash attorney Murray D. Bilfield has over 41 years of experience handling cases ranging from wrongful death, personal injury, medical malpractice, etc. and is more than qualified to help you hold the driver liable for their negligence as well as recover the compensation you need to cover the expenses you have accrued as a result of the accident.


You can reach Bilfield & Associates, LLC at:


6300 Rockside Road, Suite 204

Independence, OH 44131