Anyone who wants to operate a school bus, a tow truck or a tank truck needs a commercial driver's license. Similarly, anyone who needs to drive a vehicle transporting a certain amount of hazardous materials is also required to apply for a CDL.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration offers three classes of CDL, each requiring the applicant to complete and pass a skill and sometimes a written test. Each CDL type comes with endorsements for a particular qualification..
To apply for a CDL, the applicant must obtain a commercial learner's permit 14 days prior to the skills test. The applicant must also have a good driving record for the past 10 years and provide state-approved proof that he is medically qualified.