West Virginia CDL CDL
CDL Commercial Drivers License - Home Study Course
CDL License Test Prep
West Virginia CDL License Test

WEST VIRGINIA CDL LICENSE

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

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WEST VIRGINIA CDL Information
Specific West Virginia CDL Information

West Virginia Commercial Driver's Instruction Permit

A West Virginia commercial driver's instruction permit (CDL instruction permit) may be issued to an applicant who holds a valid West Virginia operator's or class D license who has passed the vision and/or physical standards, and knowledge tests required for issuance of a West Virginia CDL.

The West Virginia CDL instruction permit may not be issued for a period to exceed 180 days. Only 1 renewal on re-issuance may be granted within a 2 year period from issue date. In the event the applicant has been issued 2 West Virginia CDL instruction permits, before the applicant may obtain an additional West Virginia CDL instruction permit he/she must reapply and re-test on all parts of the knowledge exam.

The holder of a West Virginia CDL instruction permit may drive a commercial motor vehicle on the highway only when accompanied by the holder of a commercial driver's license valid for the type of vehicle who occupies a seat beside the individual for the purpose of giving instruction or testing. The permit must be valid for the type of vehicle being driven also.

A West Virginia CDL instruction permit may only be issued to an applicant who is at least 18 years of age and has held an operator or junior operator license for at least 2 years.

Upon completion of all tests, the person will receive a West Virginia CDL instruction permit. When operating a commercial vehicle you must have your West Virginia CDL instruction permit and regular operator's license.

Applicants must hold a West Virginia CDL instruction permit for a minimum of 14 days before they are eligible to take the road skills test. Applicants whom are ready to take the road skills test must contact a Third-Party Examiner to schedule an appointment.

West Virginia CDL Age & Fitness Requirements

You must be at least 18 years of age and have at least 2 years driving experience to qualify for a West Virginia CDL or West Virginia CDL instruction permit. Federal Motor Carrier Rules requires that drivers subject to those rules meet specific physical qualification standards and carry evidence of such qualification in the form of a medical certificate.

All drivers who operate a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) in NON-EXCEPTED INTERSTATE (NI) commerce are subject to having a DOT physical completed by a certified medical examiner listed on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's National Registry web site, located at: https://nationalregistry.fmcsa.dot.gov.

School bus drivers or applicants who work for a city, state, or federal government agency, in which a CDL is required for their employment, are considered operating in EXCEPTED INTRASTATE or EXCEPTED INTERSTATE and are exempt from meeting the FMCSA requirements. School bus drivers will be required to present their current School Bus Certification card. Applicants who work for a city, county, state, or federal government agency must provide written verification, on agency letterhead, verifying employment with their city, state, or federal government agency.

If you cannot be medically certified, you may be eligible for a medical waiver.

If you wish to be able to operate a commercial motor vehicle interstate (all 50 states) you must apply and be granted a waiver from the Federal Highway Administration. Contact (304) 347-5935 for further information.

If you wish to operate a commercial motor vehicle in WV only, please call (304) 926-3801 for information on obtaining a medical waiver.

How To Apply for a West Virginia CDL (commercial driver's license)

  • Visit your West Virginia DMV office to see all required documentation for all first time, duplicate, and renewal license applicants.
  • Complete in full, front and back, of the Application for West Virginia Commercial Driver's License and/or Endorsements (CDL-1).
  • Submit a copy of your current DOT Medical/physical certification (Long Form Physical) and DOT Medical card (valid for 30 days or more), or for city, county, state, or federal government agency employees a verification of employment on agency letterhead.
  • Pay Applicable Fees: CDL testing fee is $25.00 + driver's licensing fees. The West Virginia CDL testing fee allows testing for general knowledge, air brakes and combination. West Virginia Commercial Driver's Licenses fees are non-refundable. Endorsement fees are $10.00 each at the time of application.
  • Submit the application, a copy of your current DOT Medical/physical certification (Long Form Physical), DOT Medical card or for city, state, or federal government agency employees a verification of employment on agency letterhead, and required fees to DMV, PO Box 17010, Charleston WV 25317 or deliver in person at the West Virginia DMV Driver Services window, adjacent to the Kanawha City Regional Office, at 5707 MacCorkle Ave, SE in Kanawha City (Charleston) WV.
  • Upon receipt of the application and fees, a test card will be mailed to the applicant which will include the regional CDL testing sites.
  • Once all tests are successfully completed a West Virginia CDL instruction permit will be issued. The permit will be for a period of 180 days and can only be renewed one time. When the applicant is ready to take the road skills test, they should contact one of the third party examiners (names and telephone numbers in front of the CDL manual) to schedule an appointment. Most skills tests are given on weekends and evenings. The cost of the skills test is $90.00 which should be paid to the Third Party Examiner at the time of the test. The applicant must provide the vehicle in which the test will be given. The vehicle must be representative of the class of license for which the applicant is testing.
  • Upon completion of the skills test, the applicant should submit the passed form to one of the West Virginia DMV offices or the Driver Exam Center for processing. The applicant will receive a West Virginia CDL license at this time.
West Virginia CDL Skills Test

Applicants must hold a West Virginia CDL instruction permit for a minimum of 14 days before they are eligible to take the West Virginia CDL Road Skills Test. The skills tests are administered by certified third party examiners trained. The road skills test will not be given until you have passed all other parts of the examination and have in your possession a commercial driver's license instruction permit for the type of vehicle for which you are testing. Each section of the skills test (pre-trip, basic control and road test) must be passed.

The examiner cannot give the skills test unless your vehicle is in safe condition and legally equipped. Your vehicle must first be checked to make sure it complies with registration, vehicle inspection and equipment laws.

West Virginia CDL Written Knowledge Tests
You will need to pass the West Virginia 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 West Virginia 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 West Virginia 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

West Virginia 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 West Virginia state CDL information, go to the Official West Virginia 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 West Virginia "operator's" or "chauffeur's" licenses. It is required if you drive certain kinds of commercial vehicles either within West Virginia or outside of West Virginia.

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. West Virginia 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 WEST VIRGINIA 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 WEST VIRGINIA 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 West Virginia 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 West Virginia 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 WEST VIRGINIA are covered in detail within the Course.
      THERE ARE CURRENTLY NO APPRENTICESHIP OR TRAINING REQUIREMENTS TO GET YOUR WEST VIRGINIA 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 West Virginia.
  • 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 West Virginia CDL fees.
  • Schedule, take, and pass your CDL skills test.

A separate booklet is included with the complete West Virginia CDL Course package which covers information such as fees, locations, contacts, and other items specific to the State of West Virginia 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 West Virginia. You cannot drive a vehicle requiring HAZ MAT placarding and cannot drive double or triple trailer rigs.

CAN I USE MY WEST VIRGINIA 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 West Virginia 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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