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cdl info

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by mdscaper, Apr 8, 2004.

  1. selnoil

    selnoil LawnSite Member
    Messages: 162

    The dot numbers are free. All you need to do is contact the state and you will be issued a number. I have 3 different numbers for my companies and that was the easiest thing to get. Its better to have them and not need um then give the dot boys one more thing to write you up on.

    Why are so many guys nervous about calling the state?? ME is always very helpful!!

  2. GeoffDiamond

    GeoffDiamond LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 1,651

    Let me Repeat the Key Word Is Trailer. It doesn't matter what the tow vehicle is, if the trailer is 10,001 or more you need a Class A CDL. It is very simple!

    Class A represents a combination vehicle.

    Combination Vehicles are a Combination of a Truck of any weight and a trailer of 10,001 LBS or more. If you are pulling 12,000 lbs with a F 550 that is a class A vehicle.

    Class B Vehicle is a Truck with no trailer. The truck weighs 26,001 or more LBS. With a Class B Vehicle you are allowed to tow up to 10,000 lbs before it is considered a Class A Vehicle.

    Again Key Word Towing weight.

    Class C Vehicle is a truck weighing 26,000 lbs or less. With a Class C you are allowed to tow up to 10,000 lbs no more. At 10,001 or more you need a Class A CDL.

    I don't know where you guys get this crap that you are allowed up to a 26,000 combination. It is a load of crap and is untrue, there is one federal law that defines class A. The bottom line is go out and get the correct licence, because with in 5 years you will get nabed and be on here complaining that a LCO can't make an honest living because of the govermental policies.

    Of course you guys still doubt me. So check out this link this is the application for a Commercial Drivers License. If you read the one for class A it is again 10,000 lbs trailer. Key Word Trailer.


    For Maine Operators no Med Card required till your are 100 miles from your registered location. The only exception is with haz mat and then you need a med card for any class at any millage.


  3. mdb landscaping

    mdb landscaping LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,205

    not doubting you here geoff.............i understand the guidelines are confusing, but they need to overlook the truck rules, cause like you say, the minute a trailer passes 10,001 lbs you need class A, wether your towing with a f350 or mack 10 wheeler.
  4. mdscaper

    mdscaper LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    Geeez, I didn't mean to get an argument going. :D Here is my final conclusion. I'm going down to the DMV tomorrow. But from the MD truckers handbook(pdf file) I swear this is what it said.
    The definition of a commercial vehicle is any vehicle or combination that is over 26K. If you have a CDL, you need a class A to tow over 10k lbs. (Geoff's point exactly).
    But, if you have a non-commercial driver's license, and are operating a commercial vehicle intrastate you can have any combo up to 26k lbs. This has me wondering why you would get a class C cdl at all.
    Starting October 2003, if you have a non-commercial license operating a commercial vehicle over 10k you need a physical card. It conveniently leaves out anything about towing.
    I also saw that MD has recently passed weight rating changes for the purpose of helping small businesses like landscapers NOT have to get a CDL for all their drivers.(I know, I was in shock too). MD used to have ratings that jumped from 10k directly to 20K. Now it's in 2000 lb. increments so you can tow and still stay under 26K.
  5. bnrhuffman

    bnrhuffman LawnSite Member
    Messages: 62

    Heres what my CDL book says.
    The first requirement for needing a CDL is that it must be a commercial vehicle. Thats one over 26000 GVWR or GCWR. If its not over 26000, you dont need one. Period. That means if you have a truck thats 9000 GVWR and a trailer thats 12000 GVWR, you are under CDL. Its possible that your state is more strict than the National Commercial Drivers License Program, maybe thats where the confusion is.
    Of course there are other requirements for passengers and hazmat. I left those out for simplicity.
  6. bnrhuffman

    bnrhuffman LawnSite Member
    Messages: 62

    I know the numbers are free and Im not nervious about it but I use the trauck to comute, I would also like to be able to let my wife drive it at some point. I mean its an F350. Big deal if my wife jumps in to take it to work or whatever. Should she need a medical card to do that? Should she need to keep fuel records and stop at weigh stations.
    In WV anything over 10000 combined needs USDOT numbers if it conducts interstate commerce. That means a 1/2 ton pickup pulling a landscaping trailer needs a USDOT number, how many of those do you see with USDOT numbers?
    I have no problem with keeping the required safety equipment on board and so forth and the medical card for me is not a big deal because Im getting my CDL A soon anyway. Its just one more headache (dealing with the government always is) that I can avoid. I mean honestly, how enforcable is it. The DOT is only going to stop you and write you if you have the numbers. If you dont have them, they dont care what you do.
  7. GeoffDiamond

    GeoffDiamond LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 1,651

    Here is where you are wrong:

    1. A commercial Vehicle is actually any vehicle over 10,000 lbs.

    2. The 26,000 GVR is the point at which you must have a Class B CDL to operate the vehicle.

    3. Again for like the 5th time the Key Word is TRAILER. If the Trailer is over 10,000 you need a class A CDL that is a Federal Law.

    This 12,000 trailer and 12,500 truck for a total of 24,500 combined weight does not work.

    If you guys want to believe this combination law of 12K trailer 12K truck is legal than so be it. The bottom line is don't complain when you get nabbed.

  8. selnoil

    selnoil LawnSite Member
    Messages: 162

    OK, today I spoke with a Commercial DOT enforcement officer up the road here in Maine. Yes in Maine you would need a class A CDL to tow a trailer over 10,000 lbs even if it was towed by a vehical not usually requiring a CDL. He did advise that each stste can have different rules so you should check with your own state.

    Regarding DOT numbers, yes you need them. If your name is on the side of the truck they are required to be displayed at all times, however, if you do not have your company name on the tow vehicle you only need to display them while the the unit is working. In short have them put on a magnet, then when the truck is not working remove them.

    Now here in Maine the tow vehicle must be registered for the total combined weight (truck and trailer). So my towing pick-up trucks are registered for 16,000 which technically keeps them over the 10,000 lbs DOT number requirement all the time. But unless the truck is working my wife will never be stoped so I've cheated and put the DOT numbers on the trailer. The Officer I spoke with told me although they should be on the truck he wouldn't mind since we at least had them.

    I've never really had to deal with the small trailer weight issue since my guys are all class A with physical cards and in a random drug program. My advise again is not to listen to us but to consult your state and the one you cross into since they are the ones you must comply with!!
  9. Heron Cove PM

    Heron Cove PM LawnSite Member
    Messages: 216

    In the state of Maryland you ether need U.S. DOT numbers OR M. Dot numbers EVEN IF YOU DO NOT GO ACROSS STATE LINES.

  10. Heron Cove PM

    Heron Cove PM LawnSite Member
    Messages: 216

    Geoff is right Maryland CDL hand book page iv look at the chart.

    Class A: Any single or combination of vehicles. Any trailer

    Class B: Motor vehicles 26,001 or more pound (GVW). Trailers 10,00 pounds or less.

    Class C: Motor vehicles under 26,001 pounds (GVW). Trailers 10,000 pounds or less.

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