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TN CDL Requirements & Standards

Avoiding Trucking Accidents in Tennessee

In 1986, the federal government gave birth to the Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Act. Its purpose was to improve highway safety and ensure that commercial vehicle drivers are qualified to drive big rigs and to get unqualified drivers off our highways.

The act left the business of licensing to the states, but it did set forth minimum standards for state-issued commercial driver licenses (CDLs). Each state had to compare its current CDL standards to this new federal standard and upgrade its CDL program to meet or exceed the new federal standards.

The importance of CDL standards in reducing trucking accidents in Tennessee

Before the Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1986:

  • Many inadequately trained commercial vehicle drivers operated trucks
  • States with a CDL license class often did not test truck drivers in the types of trucks they would be driving
  • Trucks lacked consistent safety standards for design or operation

CDL state standards reduce truck accidents in Tennessee

To be eligible for a CDL and operate a commercial motor vehicle in interstate commerce, a driver must meet a set of requirements:

  • A clean driving record
  • Pass a physical exam every two years
  • Be at least 21 years of age
  • Be able to read and speak English well enough to read signs, prepare reports, and communicate with police
  • Have only one driver license (i.e., you cannot hold a regular and commercial driver’s license at the same time)

This last rule regarding driver licenses has significantly reduced the need for lawyers skilled in securing a truck accident settlement in Tennessee because, since you cannot have one license from the state you reside in and one in another state, or a license for one class of driving and one for another class, it is now much harder for bad drivers to hide their bad driving histories by getting multiple licenses. Further, states are now linked up to a national database, helping to easily check driver histories across state lines.

Contact a trucking accident attorney in Tennessee

When you need a truck accident lawyer in Tennessee, contact The Sexton Law Firm or call at (865) 691-7900.
We have years of experience and can help you pursue your truck accident lawsuit in Tennessee. Serious injury and death often result from truck crashes.

If this happens to you or someone you love, make sure that you find a reliable trucking accident law firm in Tennessee to represent you. Their experience will help ensure that you obtain the strongest possible trucking accident settlement in Tennessee or if the settlement is not possible, the strongest possible verdict through trial.