New Commercial Driver License (CDL) Skills Testing to be Implemented by PennDOT
The modernized CDL skills testing system includes several updates and improvements. One of the most significant changes is the use of technology to evaluate a driver's skills. The new system uses tablets and software to administer and grade the CDL skills test. This technology ensures that all tests are administered consistently and objectively, reducing the potential for human error.
Another improvement is the addition of new testing procedures. The updated CDL skills test includes several new procedures, such as a straight-line backing maneuver, a parallel parking maneuver, and a pre-trip inspection. These new procedures will help ensure that drivers have the necessary skills to operate commercial vehicles safely and efficiently.
The modernized CDL skills testing system also includes new training resources for commercial drivers. PennDOT has developed a series of training videos and other resources to help drivers prepare for the updated CDL skills test. These resources cover topics such as vehicle inspection, basic control skills, and on-road driving.
Lastly, PennDOT will also implement a new version of the commercial driver’s license (CDL) skills test for school bus drivers. The updated test will be available in a few weeks, starting August 28, 2023, at all PennDOT's driving license centers and third-party CDL driving skill testers. Potential school bus drivers will no longer need to take the portion of the CDL test that identifies engine components “under the hood." Under the current federal waiver, the "under the hood" portion of the test may be waived for school bus driver applicants through November 27, 2024.