How to Get a Delaware CDL License

A Delaware Commercial Driver License is issued by the state of Delaware for all drivers that operate heavy vehicles, which require special knowledge and skills to handle the vehicle safely. Individuals who drive vehicles that are over 26,000 pounds in weight, are designed to transport more than 16 people, or are placarded for carrying hazardous materials need to possess a CDL license for that particular class. However, receiving a CDL license in Delaware can be extremely different, seeing as only 5 percent of Delaware drivers even qualify for it. The following will give a thorough look into the requirements and process, so that you can be one of the few that succeed in obtaining a CDL in Delaware.

CDL License Requirements
Those interested in receiving a CDL must meet a long list of eligibility requirements set by the Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles. To apply for a CDL, drivers must be over the age of 18 and have at least one full year of driving experience. Drivers between the age 18 and 20 will be able to obtain a CDL, but they will have certain restrictions and will not be allowed to drive outside of Delaware or transport passengers. Once a driver is 21 years old or older, they will become eligible for intrastate travel and driving passenger vehicles. All applicants must also provide proof of Delaware residence and their Social Security number for verification of identity.

In addition, drivers must fill out a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Requirement medical certificate. A detailed physical examination report must be completed by an authorized physician. Based upon the information found during the physical report, the applicant will be accepted, denied, or placed with certain driving restrictions. All drivers need to be able to carry a medical card with them while operating the commercial vehicle. Applicants will be denied if they have had any prior license suspensions, revocations, or serious driving violations as well. Drivers wishing to gain the endorsement for carrying hazardous waste must go a step further and receive a background check before qualification.

CDL License Training
Drivers will need to read and study the Delaware’s Commercial Driver’s manual, which can be picked up at their local Division of Motor Vehicles office. This is a good place to start learning basic information about rules, safety procedures, and driving laws. Individuals should also take the CDL practice tests found inside the manual and on the Internet for free. Once a driver is well-prepared, they can go to any local DMV office to take the written examination, which includes questions on general driving knowledge and any endorsements selected. After passing the written test, drivers will be issued a Delaware CDL permit. The permit will be valid for 60 days, which will provide plenty of time to practice handling the commercial motor vehicle.

There are no Delaware CDL license training requirements that state all drivers must be part of a training program before qualifying for the license. That being said, in the majority of cases, drivers will need to be professionally trained in order to pass the rigorous road tests in place. Most motor carrier companies offer training for their own employees. Drivers can also take courses through private driving schools, technical schools, or even community colleges in their area.

CDL License Process

After passing the written tests and receiving adequate training, the driver must schedule an appointment for the road skills test. The Delaware CDL road testing facilities are located in Georgetown, Dover, Wilmington, and New Castle. Those taking the test are required to bring their own vehicle that represents the license being tested for. The vehicle must be registered, insured, and up to date on its motor vehicle inspections.

The road test consists of three different parts that assess a variety of driving skills. Before getting behind the wheel, the driver will need to complete a pre-trip inspection and demonstrate to the examiner that they are knowledgeable about safety procedures. Second, the skills test will score the drivers ability to turn, back up, and park the vehicle. Drivers will then be taken on an established route for more complex driving maneuvers on the road. If the route does not contain certain situations, the examiner will require the driver to describe how they would drive in words.

CDL License Cost
The cost of obtaining the license will vary depending upon the class of the vehicle, the endorsements added to the license, and the cost of the medical examination. The Delaware CDL license cost is typically $30, and this will be valid for 5 years. However, each endorsement adds on $5. The DOT physical card adds on another $50-100 depending on the physician and insurance policy. The CDL permit also requires a $48 fee for the written test. Although the costs can add up, having a CDL license can broaden job opportunity greatly and is a great investment.