New York is extending the length of commercial driver learner permits

new York

Traffic on the Van Wyck Expressway in New York City. (Frank Franklin II/Associated Press)

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New York has extended the validity of its commercial learner permit from six months to a year to address a shortage of commercial drivers.

“The need for new commercial drivers is very high, so we are doing everything we can to facilitate the admission of qualified applicants,” said Mark Schroeder, commissioner for the Department of Motor Vehicles and chair of the governor’s traffic safety committee, recently. Prior to the extension, applicants were issued a 180-day Commercial Learner Permit (CLP) with the option to extend it by 180 days. Now CLPs are valid for one year starting December 27, 2022. Applicants who have been issued a six-month document with an expiry date on or before June 26, 2022 have the option to extend their permit for 180 days.

Schroeder said the one-year extension “streamlines the process and makes it easier and cheaper for those who would need to renew to get on the road.”

NY officials have taken a number of measures to alleviate the nation’s driver shortage. Effective last May, the Vehicle and Road Traffic Act and the Transport Act were amended to introduce a Class A professional driver’s license for young adults.

Other efforts to get more CDL holders on the road include authorizing third parties to offer CDL road testing, opening new CDL testing sites, and removing a 14-day waiting period between approval and road testing.

New York is also able to conduct more road testing after working with county-run DMV offices to increase testing capacity for written exams. The state has also partnered with the State University of New York, the New York Racing Association and the State Office of General Services to open new road test sites on their properties.

Also, to make it easier to become a commercial driver, the DMV has created a comprehensive CDL resource guide posted on their website: https://dmv.ny.gov/get-cdl.

To help people pass the test, the DMV also has a list of study questions for each section of the CDL Driver’s Handbook on their website.

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