To get ELDT certification, you must complete a special training program that meets the minimum standards set by the FMCSA. There are a number of ELDT training programs available, offered by truck driving schools, trucking companies, and other organizations.
Find an ELDT provider
To find an ELDT training program, search the FMCSA's Training Provider Registry (TPR). All training programs listed in the TPR are accredited and meet the FMCSA's minimum standards.
Some states may have additional requirements for ELDT, such as minimum age or a minimum number of hours of driving experience. Applicants need to check the requirements in their state before enrolling in an ELDT course.
ELDT is not required for individuals who already hold a CDL and seek to renew or upgrade their licenses.
Choose Theory or Behind-the-Wheel component
There are two components to ELDT certification:
ELDT theory certificate
ELDT BTW (Behind-the-wheel) certificate
The ELDT theory certificate is a credential that certifies that an individual has completed a training program that covers the knowledge and theory necessary to operate a commercial vehicle safely and efficiently. Topics that the program must cover include commercial driving regulations, vehicle operation and maintenance, and safety procedures.
The ELDT behind-the-wheel (BTW) certificate is a credential that certifies that an individual has completed a training program that covers the skills necessary to operate a commercial motor vehicle safely and efficiently. Topics that the program must cover include vehicle inspections, backing and maneuvering, and emergency procedures. The BTW training involves hands-on driving practice, with an instructor supervising the trainee as they operate a commercial vehicle.
To obtain ELDT certification, an individual must complete both the theory and BTW training and pass both the written and skills tests. The theory and BTW components can be completed at the same time or separately, and may be offered by the same training provider or by different providers.
The only exception to this requirement is HazMat certification. HazMat certification does not include hands-on practice. Hence only an ELDT theory certificate is required.
Complete the program
Complete the entire program. Depending on the type of program (theory, BTW, or both), there are certain requirements you must satisfy.
Your provider submits the ELDT certificate
The Entry-Level Driver Training (ELDT) provider is responsible for submitting a certificate of completion to the Training Provider Registry (TPR) for each student who has completed the required training. The ELDT provider must submit the certificate not later than 48 hours after the student has completed their training, and must follow certain steps to submit the certificate to the TPR.
Once the ELDT certificate has been uploaded to the TPR, the student will be eligible to take the appropriate commercial driver's license (CDL) skills test.