CDL Vehicle Groups and Endorsements

If you’re planning on getting your CDL, you need to know which type of truck your job requires you to drive.

CDL laws categorize vehicles into three separate categories:

Group A- Any combination of vehicles with a gross combination weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 pounds or more, provided the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of any vehicle(s) being towed 10,001 pounds or more.

Group B- Any straight single vehicle with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 26,001 pounds or more. This can also be any vehicle towing another vehicle with a GVWR of 10,000 pounds or less.

Group C- Small vehicles that do not meet Group A or B qualifications. They are designed to carry 16 or more passengers (including the driver), or to haul hazardous (hazmat) substances.

A Group A driver can drive a Group B or C vehicle, and a Group B driver can drive a Group C vehicle, provided (s)he has the correct endorsements.

Endorsements are like authorizations to drive a vehicle that has a specific purpose. Some tests require just a written knowledge test, and others require and on-the-road skills test as well. While endorsements can vary slightly from state to state, generally they are as follows:

H- Hazardous Materials- Vehicles carrying hazardous materials that require a identifying placard (knowledge test)

N- Tank Vehicles- Commercial vehicles carrying liquid or gaseous material within tanks (knowledge test)

P- Passenger Vehicles designed to carry 16 or more people, including the driver (knowledge and skills test)

S- School bus- Any commercial motorized vehicle transporting students to and from school or school-sponsored events (knowledge and skills test)

T- Double or Triple Trailers (knowledge test only)

X- Tank and Hazardous Materials Endorsement (knowledge test only)

Trucking Groups and Endorsements

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