Getting a CDL
Do I Need A Commercial Driver's License?
If you are going to be in a position that puts you behind the wheel of a Community Transit bus, paratransit van or other agency vehicle as a coach operator, mechanic or transportation supervisor, a Commercial Driver's License (CDL) is required.
When Do I Need a CDL?
If you are offered a Coach Operator Trainee position, CDL’s aren’t required at the time you are hired. However, you will need a CDL Class B instructional permit (and take all necessary written exams) before starting Coach Operator training. Community Transit provides coach operators paid training to get a full CDL when they are hired.
Additional Community Transit positions requiring a CDL include, but are not limited to:
- Coach Operator
- Coach Operator Trainee (Permit)
- Transportation Supervisor
- Schedule Analyst
- Journey Mechanic
- Apprentice Mechanic
- Transportation Assistant Manager
- Instructor Lead
- Staff Development Manager
- Vehicle Service Attendant
- Vehicle Service Worker
Additional CDL Requirements:
- The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration physical qualification standards requires that a CDL driver has a valid Medical Certification.
- Acquiring and maintaining a valid Department of Transportation (DOT) medical certification is required in the job.
- A DOT Physical is required for the certification and if the employee’s physical is provided by our contracted provider, it is paid for by Community Transit.
- For more details about a CDL, check out the Washington Department of Licensing's website at http://www.dol.wa.gov/driverslicense/cdlcdip.html
CDL Tips for Coach Operator Trainees
If you are hired as a Coach Operator Trainee, you will need to obtain a Commercial Driver’s License Class B instructional permit (and take all of the necessary written exams) before you start class:
- General Knowledge Exam
- Passenger Endorsement Exam
- Exam to have the Air Brake Restriction lifted
If you have a current CDL from another state, it's transferable! Get the transfer process underway at http://www.dol.wa.gov/driverslicense/cdltransfer.html
How to get a CDL Instructional Permit
- Go to any WA Department of Licensing location or online at www.dol.wa.gov/driverslicense/cdlguide.html to get a copy of the CDL Guidebook.
- Study the CDL Guidebook for the appropriate sections to pass the exams above (the guidebook spells it all out).
- Go to any Department of Licensing office that conducts knowledge tests and take the three exams listed above.
- You will need to pay the fee(s) to take your written exams(see state website for current fee rates).
- Community Transit Will Prepare Coach Operator Trainees for the CDL Skills Test
During your training, we will prepare you to take the second set of tests for your CDL, the “skills tests,” which include:
- Pre-trip inspection
- Basic controls (backing)
- Road test
We will also:
- Pay for this portion of your CDL testing
- Schedule your test
- Provide you with a vehicle for testing purposes
We will provide you with an “Employer Certificate of Training Completion" which you will need in order to obtain your CDL.
Please note that your CDL license and endorsements require additional fees when obtaining and renewing your license. You are responsible for these fees (see state website for current fee rates).