Available Now: 2023 Schedule of Hazmat & RCRA Training

New Hazmat CDL Training Requirements Proposed

Posted on 3/7/2016 by Roger Marks

In the Federal Register today, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) proposed minimum training requirements for new commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers. The proposed rule includes a section devoted to hazmat training requirements for CMV drivers who wish to add a hazardous materials (H) endorsement on a Commercial Drivers’ License (CDL).

New rules for driver training will be found at 49 CFR Part 380, Subpart F. To accommodate new hazmat training rules, FMCSA proposes adding a new section—to be found at 49 CFR 380.623—to cover training requirements for CMV drivers seeking a hazmat endorsement.

FMCSA's Proposed Hazmat CDL Endorsement Training Rules 

Because the current CDL requirement to obtain a hazmat endorsement does not include a skills test, any hazmat training proposed for CDL holders will focus on “hazmat theory,” according to the proposed rule. FMCSA’s proposal explicitly does not set a minimum number of hours required for hazmat training, providing instead a list of topics that must be covered.

FMCSA’s proposed hazmat training requirements can be broken down into three major parts: curriculum that matches the current US DOT PHMSA hazmat training standard for “hazmat employees” (49 CFR 172.704), basic requirements for safely operating a CMV, and issues specific to driving a CMV loaded with hazardous materials.
hazmat training for CDL endorsement
Standard Hazmat Training Requirements

A number of the proposed hazmat training requirements for CMV drivers mirror the existing training rules for “hazmat employees.” As defined in the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) the term hazmat employee comprises any employee who can affect the safety of a hazmat shipment. Specifically, the new FMCSA driver training requirement will cover issues like:
  • Basic HM competencies, including applicability requirements when hazardous materials are transported;
  • Communication requirements, including shipping paper requirements, marking, labeling, placarding, emergency response information, and hazmat shippers’ responsibilities; and
  • Reporting hazmat incidents, including proper completion and submission of hazmat incident reports;
  • Proper loading and unloading procedures for hazardous materials cargo. 
For more information about US DOT’s hazmat training requirements for all “hazmat employees,” watch the Hazmat Training Standard Video here.

CMV Driver Training Requirements

Other specific topics proposed in FMCSA’s new training requirements include CMV driver knowledge not necessarily related to hazardous materials, like:
  • Basic competencies for safely operating a CMV , including safe operation of emergency control features, special vehicle handling characteristics, rollover prevention, and properties and hazards of the hazardous materials transported;
  • Applicable requirements of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR) and procedures for safe operation of a motor vehicle, including special precautions for fires, loading and unloading, operation of cargo tank and motor vehicle equipment, and shut-off/shut-down information;
  • How to safely fuel a vehicle that contains hazmat and when to check tire pressure.
Unique Hazmat Issues for CMV Drivers

Lastly, there are a few hazmat transportation issues that are specific to driving a CMV. Some of these issues are singled out for inclusion in the eventual hazmat driver training requirements:
  • Procedures and best practices for handling a hazardous materials emergency response incident and post-response operations, including what to do in case of an unintended hazmat release;
  • Rules for hazardous materials transported on vehicles with passengers and property, including the types and quantities of hazmat that can and cannot be transported in these vehicles/situations;
  • Specific requirements for hazmat shipped in bulk packages, including cargo tanks, IBCs, bulk cylinders, and portable tanks;
  • Proper segregation and securement of HM, and prohibitions on transporting certain solid and liquid poisons with foodstuffs;
  • Routing and route-planning procedures to follow for transportation of radioactive and non-radioactive hazardous materials; and
  • Proper procedures and operational requirements for hazmat that requires the use of a hazardous materials safety permit (HSMP), including communication, constant attendance, and parking rules.
View the full proposed rule in the Federal Register here.

49 CFR, IATA, and IMDG Hazmat Shipper Certification Training

Build the expertise and confidence to ship hazmat safely and in compliance with the latest 49 CFR, IATA, and IMDG rules. The Complete Multimodal Hazmat Shipper Workshops are presented in convenient locations nationwide-enroll now and get 365 days of complete on-the-job support, including access to the Finder Q&A service!

Join experienced hazmat professionals from your area for an engaging learning experience led by instructors who help uncover the real-world meaning of the regulations that affect your job.


Tags: DOT, hazmat shipping, new rules

Find a Post

Compliance Archives

Lion - Quotes

My experience with Lion classes has always been good. Lion Technology always covers the EPA requirements I must follow.

Steven Erlandson

Environmental Coordinator

Lion courses always set the bar for content, reference, and practical application. Membership and access to the experts is an added bonus.

John Brown, CSP

Director of Safety & Env Affairs

Lion's course was superior to others I have taken in the past. Very clear in the presentation and the examples helped to explain the content presented.

George Bersik

Hazardous Waste Professional

I will never go anywhere, but to Lion Technology.

Dawn Swofford

EHS Technician

These are the best classes I attend each year. I always take something away and implement improvements at my sites.

Kim Racine

EH&S Manager

Very good. I have always appreciated the way Lion Tech develops, presents and provides training and materials.

John Troy

Environmental Specialist

The instructor was very knowledgeable and provided pertinent information above and beyond the questions that were asked.

Johnny Barton

Logistics Coordinator

Best course instructor I've ever had. Funny, relatable, engaging; made it interesting and challenged us as the professionals we are.

Amanda Schwartz

Environmental Coordinator

Lion does a great job summarizing and communicating complicated EH&S-related regulations.

Michele Irmen

Sr. Environmental Engineer

I have been to other training companies, but Lion’s material is much better and easier to understand.

Mark Abell

Regional Manager

Download Our Latest Whitepaper

Four key considerations to help you maximize the convenience and quality of your experience with online training.

Latest Whitepaper

By submitting your phone number, you agree to receive recurring marketing and training text messages. Consent to receive text messages is not required for any purchases. Text STOP at any time to cancel. Message and data rates may apply. View our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.