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Troops to Trucks - Military CDL Driving Test Waiver


Troops to Trucks - Military Waiver Program for CDL Driving Test

Through the Troops to Trucks program, the DMV is making it easier for personnel trained by the military in the operation of heavy vehicles to obtain a civilian commercial driver license (CDL). A commercial driver license is required in California to operate large trucks and buses.

The Troops to Trucks program allows the DMV to waive the CDL driving test for qualified military service members who are, or were employed within the last year, in a military position requiring the operation of a military motor vehicle equivalent to a commercial motor vehicle on public roads and highways. Waiving the driving test requirement streamlines the CDL application process for service men and women and eliminates the need to provide a commercial motor vehicle (CMV). The driving test will not be waived for a school bus and/or passenger endorsement.

To meet the requirements as detailed in federal regulation an applicant must certify that, during the two-year period immediately prior to applying for a CDL, he/she:
(1) Has not had more than one license (except for a military license);
(2) Has not had any license suspended, revoked, or cancelled;
(3) Has not had any convictions for any type of motor vehicle for the disqualifying offenses:

  • Any alcohol or drug related offenses,
  • Leaving the scene of an accident,
  • Commission of a felony involving the use of a motor vehicle,
  • Driving a commercial motor vehicle while your commercial license is suspended, revoked, disqualified, or cancelled,
  • Causing a fatality through the negligent operation of a commercial motor vehicle, including , but not limited to, manslaughter, homicide by motor vehicle, and negligent homicide,
  • Use of a motor vehicle in a felony involving manufacturing, distribution, or dispensing of a controlled substance,
  • Violation of state or local law relating to motor vehicle traffic control (other than a parking violation) arising in connection with any traffic accident and has no record of an accident in which he/she was at fault; and

(4) Has not had more than one conviction for any type of motor vehicle for serious traffic violations:

  • Speeding in excess of 15 mph,
  • Reckless driving,
  • Making improper or erratic lane changes,
  • Following the vehicle ahead to closely,
  • A violation arising in connection with a fatal accident,
  • Driving a commercial motor vehicle without obtaining a commercial driver license,
  • Driving a commercial motor vehicle without a commercial driver license in possession,
  • Driving a commercial motor vehicle without the proper class or endorsement,
  • Violating a state or local law or ordinance prohibiting texting while driving,
  • Violating a state or local law or ordinance prohibiting the use of a hand held telephone while driving,

An applicant must provide evidence and certify that he/she:
(1) Is regularly employed or was regularly employed within the last year in a military position requiring operation of a CMV;
(2) Was exempted from the CDL requirements in ยง383.3(c); and
(3) While serving in the military, was operating a CMV equivalent to a civilian commercial vehicle, for at least 2 years immediately preceding discharge from the military.
The certifications may be made using the following forms:

Submit the following documents to a DMV Field Office:

Note: A Commercial Driver License Application must be completed.


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