If you are looking for a high-paying, in-demand career, consider a career as a professional truck driver. But before you can earn the big bucks, you first need to obtain your commercial driver’s license (CDL). There are three primary CDL classifications in Oregon: Class A, Class B, and Class C. Here is information about the different CDL classifications and how you can obtain your CDL at a truck driving school in Portland.
Class A CDL
Drivers who hold their Class A CDL are authorized to drive any combination of vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 26,000 pounds or more, provided the GVWR of the vehicle or trailer being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds. In addition to passing the CDL General Knowledge Test CDL Combination Knowledge Test, you must pass a Pre-Trip Vehicle Inspection Test, Basic Control Skills Test, and a behind-the-wheel Drive Test in a Class A commercial vehicle.
Class B CDL
While a Class B CDL also authorizes the holder to operate a single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,000 or more pounds, the vehicle or trailer in tow must not be in excess of 10,000 pounds. The CDL General Knowledge Test, Pre-Trip Inspection Test, Basic Control Skills Test, and Drive Test (in a Class B commercial vehicle) are all required in order to obtain your Class B CDL.
Class C CDL
The Class C CDL authorizes the operation of any vehicle designed to transport 16 or more persons (including the driver) and any vehicle less than 26,000 pounds GVWR used in the transportation of hazardous materials. To transport hazardous materials, the driver needs a hazardous materials endorsement in addition to a Class C CDL.
As you look for a truck driving school in Portland, be on the lookout for a program that offers small group sizes, on-site training areas, modern equipment, and CDL practice tests. If you are a veteran, you can use your G.I. Bill and other VA education benefits to obtain your CDL.