Ohio CDL CDL
CDL Commercial Drivers License - Home Study Course
CDL License Test Prep
Ohio CDL License Test

OHIO CDL LICENSE

Commercial Drivers License
CDL LICENSE Requirements
Home Study Course
For Tests Beginning March 1, 2017

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OHIO CDL Information
Specific Ohio CDL Information

ODPS Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles Commercial Driver License (CDL)

Ohio CDL Fees
To obtain an Ohio CDL you will need to pay the appropriate fees.
  • $10.00 for the pre-trip inspection portion of the test;
  • $10.00 for the off-road maneuvering portion of the test;
  • $30.00 for the on-road portion of the test.
The Ohio CDL applicant who schedules an appointment with the Ohio State Highway Patrol (OSP), may have to pay an appointment fee of $50.00 at the time he schedules the appointment. These fees are in addition to any fees

Who Needs an Ohio CDL?
The classes of Ohio CDL and the commercial motor vehicles that they authorize the operation of are as follows:
  • Any combination of vehicles with a combined gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more, provided the gross vehicle weight rating of the vehicle or vehicles being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds;
  • Any single vehicle with a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more, or any such vehicle towing a vehicle having a gross vehicle weight rating that is not in excess of 10,000 pounds;
  • Any single vehicle or combination of vehicles that is not a class A or class B vehicle, but that either is designed to transport 16 or more passengers including the driver;
  • Any school bus with a gross vehicle weight rating of less than 26,001 pounds that is designed to transport fewer than 16 passengers including the driver;
  • Is transporting hazardous materials for which placarding is required under subpart F of 49 C.F.R. part 172;
  • Any single vehicle or combination of vehicles that is designed to be operated and to travel on a public street or highway and is considered by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to be a commercial motor vehicle, including, but not limited to, a motorized crane, a vehicle whose function is to pump cement, a rig for drilling wells, and a portable crane.

Classes of Ohio CDL Licenses
Ohio Revised Code, Section 4506.12 (B) The classes of Ohio CDL and the commercial motor vehicles that they authorize the operation of are as follows:
  • Class A - any combination of vehicles with a combined gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more, if the gross vehicle weight rating of the vehicle or vehicles being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds
  • Class B - any single vehicle with a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more or any such vehicle towing a vehicle having a gross vehicle weight rating that is not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Class C - any single vehicle, or combination of vehicles, that is not a Class A or Class B vehicle, but that is designed to transport 16 or more passengers, including the driver, or is transporting hazardous materials in an amount requiring placarding, or any school bus with a gross vehicle weight rating of less than 26,001 pounds that is designed to transport fewer than 16 passengers including the driver.
The higher class Ohio CDL allows you to drive vehicles in any of the lower classes provided you have the correct endorsements.

Occasional drivers are also required to apply for an Ohio CDL and all appropriate endorsements. For example: Mechanics or truck sales people who test drive on a public roadway.

In addition to an Ohio CDL, drivers may need special endorsements if they:
  • Drive vehicles carrying passengers, (buses);
  • Pull double or triple trailers (see Ohio CDL exemptions below);
  • Drive tank vehicles (see Ohio CDL exemptions below); or
  • Haul placarded hazardous materials (see Ohio CDL exemptions below)

Ohio CDL Endorsements and Restrictions
The following endorsements and restrictions apply to commercial drivers' licenses:
  • H - Authorizes the driver to drive a vehicle transporting hazardous materials in an amount requiring placarding;
  • K - Restricts the driver to only intrastate operation
  • L - Restricts the driver to vehicles not equipped with air brakes;
  • T - Authorizes the driver to drive a vehicle configured with double or triple trailers that create more than one articulation point for the combination;
  • P - Authorizes the driver to drive vehicles designed to transport sixteen or more passengers, including the driver;
  • P1 - Authorizes the driver to drive class A vehicles designed for fewer than sixteen passengers, including the driver, and all lesser classes of vehicles without restriction as to the designed passenger capacity of the vehicle;
  • P2 - Authorizes the driver to drive class A or B vehicles designed for fewer than sixteen passengers, including the driver, and all lesser classes of vehicles without restriction as to the designed passenger capacity of the vehicle;
  • P4 - Restricts the driver to driving class C school buses designed to transport fewer than sixteen passengers including the driver;
  • N - Authorizes the driver to drive tank vehicles;
  • S - Authorizes the driver to drive school buses transporting children;
  • X - Authorizes the driver to drive tank vehicles transporting hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placarding;
  • W- Restricts the driver to the operation of commercial motor vehicles in accordance with a waiver for farm-related service industries issued under section 4506.24 of the Revised Code

Procedures for Obtaining an Ohio CDL or Ohio CDL Instruction Permit
To get an Ohio CDL or Ohio CDL instruction permit (CDIP) you are required to be at least 18 years of age and have a valid Ohio State driver's license.

NOTE: Employers may impose additional standards and/or higher age requirements.

Bring the following to the licensing office:
  • Your social security card issued by the Social Security Administration. Your social security number is required for identification purposes. This is a mandatory requirement.
  • A CDIP may be issued to an individual who holds a valid automobile or classified driver's license. The holder of a CDIP may drive a commercial motor vehicle on a highway only when accompanied by the holder of a commercial driver's license, valid for the type of vehicle driven, who occupies a seat beside the individual, for the purpose of giving instruction in driving the commercial motor vehicle.
  • The CDIP is valid for six months. A CDIP expires after six months and cannot be renewed. A new permit must be purchased and the vision and knowledge tests must be re-taken.
  • The CDIP fee is $27.00

Ohio CDL Renewal/Upgrade
When applying for a renewal or upgrade of an Ohio CDL, all applicants shall:
  • Provide any updated information;
  • Pass a written hazardous materials test if wishing to retain or upgrade a hazardous materials endorsement;
  • Complete any additional testing requirements for an upgrade.
Individuals renewing a current Ohio driver license, Ohio commercial driver license (CDL), or Ohio identification (ID) card are no longer be required to present a Social Security card at an Ohio BMV license agency for verification at the time of renewal.

Ohio CDL Testing
Both the knowledge (written) and skill (driving) tests are required to receive an Ohio CDL. A knowledge test is required for:
  • The class of vehicle;
  • Each endorsement; and
  • Removing the air brake restriction.
The skill test consists of a pre-trip inspection and a road test, and takes up to 90 minutes. You will need to provide a vehicle appropriate to the class of license you apply for, including a bus (designed to carry 16 or more persons including the driver) if applying for a passenger endorsement.

After an Ohio CDL is issued, adding a passenger endorsement, upgrading a license or removing a restriction requires both knowledge and skill tests and applicable fees.

All drivers who surrender the Ohio CDL license or any endorsement will be required to pay all applicable fees and retake both the knowledge and skill tests to obtain an Ohio CDL.

Ohio CDL Written Knowledge Tests
You will need to pass the Ohio Knowledge Tests that are required for the class of license, restriction, and endorsements you wish to possess. A general knowledge test for the Class A or Class B and C license must be successfully completed by all CDL applicants. The information needed to pass these tests is contained in the FREE Ohio CDL Handbook. Please read and study this manual carefully.
  • Class A - 70 Questions (50 GK + 20 Combination Vehicles) - Skills test required.
  • Class B - 50 Questions - Skills test required.
  • Class C - 50 Questions - Skills test required for bus, school bus and air brakes vehicles..
  • Passenger Endorsement - 20 questions - Skills test required in bus.
  • School Bus Endorsement - 25 questions - Skills test required in school bus.
  • Doubles/Triples Endorsement - 20 questions - No additional skills tests.
  • Tank Vehicle Endorsement - 20 questions - No additional skills tests.
  • Hazardous Materials Endorsement - 30 questions - No additional skills tests.
  • Air Brake Restriction Removal - 25 questions - Additional skills test in vehicle with Air Brakes.

Classes of Ohio CDL and Required Tests

CDL Class Tests Required Possible Endorsements and Required Tests
Class A
(Combination
vehicle endorsement required)

General Knowledge Written Exam

Combination Endorsement Written Exam

Road Exam

H - Hazardous Materials Written Exam
N - Tank Vehicles Written Exam
P - Passenger Transport Written and Road Exam
T - Doubles/Triples Written Exam
X - HazMat and Tank Vehicles Written Exam
L - Air Brakes Written and Road Exam
S - School Bus Written and Road Exam
Class B

General Knowledge Written Exam

Road Exam

H - Hazardous Materials Written Exam
N - Tank Vehicles Written Exam
P - Passenger Transport Written and Road Exam
X - HazMat and Tank Vehicles Written Exam
L - Air Brakes Written and Road Exam
S - School Bus Written and Road Exam
Class C

General Knowledge Written Exam

Road Exam

Note: If upgrading to a Class C from a Class D, no road test is required UNLESS the endorsement requires one.
H - Hazardous Materials Written Exam
N - Tank Vehicles Written Exam
P - Passenger Transport Written and Road Exam
X - HazMat and Tank Vehicles Written Exam
L - Air Brakes Written and Road Exam
S - School Bus Written and Road Exam

Ohio CDL Endorsements

Exam Time Allowed (Minutes) # of Questions on Exam # of Correct Answers Needed to Pass
General Knowledge 60 50 40
Air Brakes 25 25 20
HazMat 30 30 24
Tank 20 20 16
Passenger 20 20 16
Doubles/Triples 20 20 16
Combination Vehicles 20 20 16
School Bus 20 20 16

For the most complete and accurate official Ohio state CDL information, go to the Official Ohio CDL Website.

WHAT IS A CDL?

A "CDL" is a Commercial Drivers License. It meets certain "standards" that are the same for every state. It differs from your Ohio "operator's" or "chauffeur's" licenses. It is required if you drive certain kinds of commercial vehicles either within Ohio or outside of Ohio.

WHAT IS THE COMMERCIAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY ACT OF 1986 (CMVSA/86)?

It is a law passed by the United States Congress which requires ALL the individual states to comply with certain standards in regards to the licensing of commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers. Ohio driver licensing standards comply with the law, requiring CMV drivers to obtain a Commercial Driver's License (CDL) when driving applicable vehicles. A CDL license can ONLY be issued in the driver's STATE OF LEGAL RESIDENCE, and if you have a CDL, you can have NO OTHER DRIVER'S LICENSE in ANY other state.

WHEN DO I NEED A CDL INSTEAD OF MY REGULAR OHIO DRIVERS LICENSE?

A CDL is required if you operate any of the following CMV's . . .

  • A vehicle with a manufacturer's gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of more than 26,000 lbs.
  • A vehicle towing a unit with a manufacturer's GVWR of more than 10,000 lbs. when the GCWR exceeds 26,000 lbs.
  • A vehicle designed to transport 16 or more persons (including the operator) or any vehicle carrying children to or from school and home regularly for compensation.
  • A vehicle of any size that carries hazardous materials in amounts requiring placarding.

ARE THERE ANY EXEMPTIONS TO BEING REQUIRED TO HAVE A CDL?

Yes, a few . . .

  • Active Duty Military . . . with military licenses operating military vehicles.
  • Firefighters . . . meeting approved training standards and operating authorized emergency vehicles.
  • Farmers . . . in certain cases.
  • Individuals ....operating motor homes or other vehicles used exclusively to transport personal possessions or family members, for non business purposes.

ARE THERE ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS TO OBTAIN A OHIO CDL?

You must meet the following requirements to obtain a CDL . . .

  • You must be 21 years old. (18 years if all commercial driving is done within Ohio and if no hazardous materials requiring placarding are transported and if you do not drive double or triple trailer rigs).
  • Possess a valid medical certificate in accordance with MCSR 49 CFR 391.41.
  • You must otherwise qualify for the license based on your driving record. Any of the following will disqualify you from obtaining a CDL . . .
    • If you possess a license from any state other than your State of Residence.
    • If you are currently subject to any disqualification of your commercial driving privilege in Ohio or any other state.
    • If your license is currently suspended, revoked, denied, or cancelled.
    • If you have a conviction for operating a CMV (commercial motor vehicle) while impaired in the 24 months immediately preceding application.
    • other technical rules, and further restrictions that pertain only to OHIO are covered in detail within the Course.
      THERE ARE CURRENTLY NO APPRENTICESHIP OR TRAINING REQUIREMENTS TO GET YOUR OHIO CDL. THIS MAY SOON CHANGE.

Access Official Federal CDL Medical Requirements Info

HOW DO I OBTAIN A CDL?

By completing the following items . . .

  • Show your driver's license from your State of Residence.
  • Take and pass all written examinations that apply to your license class and endorsement requirements.
  • Show proof of social security number.
  • Meet driver record eligibility requirements as determined by the State of Ohio.
  • Fill out an application including certifications.
  • Show proof that you passed the required written tests, pass a vision screening, and show proof of a valid DOT medical certificate (BEFORE a CDL Temporary Instruction Permit will be issued and before you will be allowed to the the skills test).
  • Pay the Ohio CDL fees.
  • Schedule, take, and pass your CDL skills test.

A separate booklet is included with the complete Ohio CDL Course package which covers information such as fees, locations, contacts, and other items specific to the State of Ohio for the written and skills examinations for ALL classes of license and ALL endorsements.

What do the terms Class A, Class B, and Class C mean on a CDL?

It refers to the type of vehicle that you may operate . . .

  • CLASS A . . . allows you to operate vehicles which tow trailers or other vehicles with a GVWR over 10,000 pounds when the combined GVWR is over 26,000 pounds. A Class "A" license also allows you to operate Class B and C vehicles. Applicable endorsements are required.
  • CLASS B . . . allows you to operate single vehicles with a GVWR of 26,001 lbs or more OR a gross combination weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 lbs. or more, towing trailers/vehicles rated at 10,000 pounds GVWR or less. A Class "B" license also allows you to operate Class C vehicles. Applicable endorsements are required.
  • CLASS C . . .allows you to operate vehicles under 26,001 lbs. GVWR, that would normally not require a CDL; except when they are designed to transport 16 or more persons including the driver; or that carry 15 or less people (including the driver) transporting children to or from school and home regularly for compensation, or carry hazardous materials in amounts requiring placarding. Applicable endorsements are required.

What are Endorsement Codes and when do I need them on my CDL?

Endorsements are necessary for certain commercial driving requirements as follows . . .

  • AIR BRAKES endorsement for vehicles with air brakes.
  • (T) DOUBLE or TRIPLE TRAILERS. For tractors pulling two or three trailers.
  • (P) PASSENGER. For vehicles which are designed to carry 16 or more people (including the driver);
  • (S) SCHOOL BUS. Any vehicle transporting children to or from school and home regularly for compensation.
  • (N) TANK VEHICLES. For vehicles designed to haul liquids or liquefied gases in bulk in permanently mounted tanks or portable tanks rated at 1,000 gallons or more.
  • (H) HAZARDOUS MATERIALS. To carry hazardous materials in amounts requiring placards.
  • (X) Endorsement code designating a Tank (N) vehicle that carries Hazardous Materials (H).

Access Official Federal CDL Hazardous Materials Info

I'M OVER 18 YEARS OLDS, BUT NOT 21 YEARS OLD YET. CAN I GET A CDL?

Yes . . . with restrictions. Until your 21st birthday, you cannot drive a commercial vehicle outside the borders of Ohio. You cannot drive a vehicle requiring HAZ MAT placarding and cannot drive double or triple trailer rigs.

CAN I USE MY OHIO CDL OUT OF STATE?

Yes! If you are 21 years or older it is good throughout the entire United States.

CAN MY CDL BE SUSPENDED OR REVOKED?

Yes, there are MANY reasons that your CDL can be suspended or revoked. Improper use of alcohol or drugs, traffic violations, and failure to notify top the list. The Ohio CDL Course details ALL of the rules regarding suspension or revocation. The point to remember is that alcohol or drug use is not tolerated and your record WILL FOLLOW YOU THROUGHOUT THE UNITED STATES FOREVER!!!

SO LET'S SAY THAT MY CDL IS REVOKED. CAN'T I JUST GET A CDL IN ANOTHER STATE?

No!!! Those days are gone. One computer system keeps track of all licenses THROUGHOUT the United States. In a matter of seconds it can be determined if you possess more than one license.

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