On February 7th, 2022, the ELDT mandate will go into effect for all driving schools, including Georgia Driving Academy. However, unlike many of these schools, we will not have to change how we train our students in our CDL Training Programs. GDA will be required to register with the FMCSA by showing we meet and exceed the FMCSA requirements to become an ELDT Certified CDL school. After this happens, any potential students can find our school under the Training Provider Registry (TPR). A TPR listing grants schools a unique training provider ID number on the TPR and every future GDA graduate’s record to prove they are an ELDT Certified School.
What is Entry-Level Driver Training
The FMCSA set a new training mandate to standardize training for all new CDL drivers called the Entry-Level-Driver-Training mandate. Any student that wants to get their Class A or B CDL, add an endorsement to their licenses such as School Bus (S), Passenger (P), or Hazardous Material (H), and any student that holds a Class B CDL and wants to upgrade to a Class A CDL.
Why ELDT is needed
The Entry-Level Driver Training (ELDT) mandate required by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and the Department of Transportation (DOT) improves CDL training to make all drivers safer. It requires potential students to go through standardized training at an approved training provider. The ELDT mandate will remove non-certified CDL schools from producing inadequately trained students and will ultimately create safer roads. Any student that wants to get their CDL and does not attend an approved ELDT school will be unable to take the CDL test at the DMV. With nearly 3.9 million truck drivers on the road in the United States, the need to have each driver properly trained has become the number one focus of the DOT. Truck Drivers and their trucks are one in every fifteen vehicles on the road every day.
History of the Entry-Level Driver Training Mandate
The ELDT Mandate has been a work in progress since 2012 when congress mandated that the DOT produce regulations to make sure any driver wanting to get their CDL goes through formal training. In 2015 the Commercial Vehicle Training Association (CVTA) and 25 other trucking industry leaders were tasked to participate in the Entry-Level Driver Training Advisory Committee, whose goal was to help finalize the ELDT mandate. The committee set the official date for the new ELDT Mandate to go into effect on February 4th, 2020; however, due to the Pandemic, the mandate was pushed back by two years to February 7th, 2022.
How ELDT affects students
As mentioned above, new CDL students will only be able to obtain a CDL from FMCSA approved training provider that has its ELDT certification. Students who have their Commercial Learners Permit before February 7th, 2022, are not required to follow ELDT mandates if they get their CDL or any endorsements before their CLP expires.
Anyone wishing to find more information about the ELDT mandate can visit any of the three following resources. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration oversees ensuring the ELDT mandate is effective and working for all truck driving schools. The Training Provider Registry is the public database of all the ELDT compliant schools, so students need to make sure their school of choice is on this list so that they can get their CDL’s. Finally, the Commercial Vehicle Training Association and its members are strong advocates for ELDT, so any school part of CVTA will be ELDT compliant and on the Training Provider Registry.