Code Section Group

Vehicle Code - VEH

DIVISION 6. DRIVERS' LICENSES [12500 - 15326]

  ( Heading of Division 6 amended by Stats. 1961, Ch. 1615. )

CHAPTER 7. Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Program [15200 - 15326]

  ( Chapter 7 added by Stats. 1988, Ch. 1509, Sec. 9. )

ARTICLE 5. Commercial Driver’s License [15250 - 15263]
  ( Article 5 added by Stats. 1988, Ch. 1509, Sec. 9. )

15250.
  

(a) (1) A person shall not operate a commercial motor vehicle unless that person has in his or her immediate possession a valid commercial driver’s license of the appropriate class.

(2) A person shall not operate a commercial motor vehicle while transporting hazardous materials unless that person has in his or her possession a valid commercial driver’s license with a hazardous materials endorsement. An instruction permit does not authorize the operation of a vehicle transporting hazardous materials.

(b) (1) Before an application for an original or renewal of a commercial driver’s license with a hazardous materials endorsement is submitted to the United States Transportation Security Administration for the processing of a security threat assessment, as required under Part 1572 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations, the department shall complete a check of the applicant’s driving record to ensure that the person is not subject to a disqualification under Part 383.51 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

(2) (A) A person shall not be issued a commercial driver’s license until he or she has passed a written and driving test for the operation of a commercial motor vehicle that complies with the minimum federal standards established by the federal Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1986 (Public Law 99-570) and Part 383 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations, and has satisfied all other requirements of that act as well as any other requirements imposed by this code.

(B) The driving skills test as specified in Section 383.113 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations may be waived for a commercial motor vehicle driver with military commercial motor vehicle experience who is currently licensed with the United States Armed Forces at the time of his or her application for a commercial driver’s license, and whose driving record in combination with his or her driving experience meets, at a minimum, the conditions required by Section 383.77(a) and (b) of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

(c) The tests shall be prescribed and conducted by or under the direction of the department. The department may allow a third-party tester to administer the driving test part of the examination required under this section and Section 15275 if all of the following conditions are met:

(1) The tests given by the third party are the same as those that would otherwise be given by the department.

(2) The third party has an agreement with the department that includes, but is not limited to, the following provisions:

(A) Authorization for the United States Secretary of Transportation, or his or her representative, and the department, or its representative, to conduct random examinations, inspections, and audits without prior notice.

(B) Permission for the department, or its representative, to conduct onsite inspections at least annually.

(C) A requirement that all third-party testers meet the same qualification and training standards as the department’s examiners, to the extent necessary to conduct the driving skill tests in compliance with the requirements of Part 383 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

(D) The department may cancel, suspend, or revoke the agreement with a third-party tester if the third-party tester fails to comply with the standards for the commercial driver’s license testing program, or with any other term of the third-party agreement, upon 15 days’ prior written notice of the action to cancel, suspend, or revoke the agreement by the department to the third party. Any action to appeal or review any order of the department canceling, suspending, or revoking a third-party testing agreement shall be brought in a court of competent jurisdiction under Section 1085 of the Code of Civil Procedure, or as otherwise permitted by the laws of this state. The action shall be commenced within 90 days from the effective date of the order.

(E) Any third-party tester whose agreement has been canceled pursuant to subparagraph (D) may immediately apply for a third-party testing agreement.

(F) A suspension of a third-party testing agreement pursuant to subparagraph (D) shall be for a term of less than 12 months as determined by the department. After the period of suspension, the agreement shall be reinstated upon request of the third-party tester.

(G) A revocation of a third-party testing agreement pursuant to subparagraph (D) shall be for a term of not less than one year. A third-party tester may apply for a new third-party testing agreement after the period of revocation and upon submission of proof of correction of the circumstances causing the revocation.

(H) Authorization for the department to charge the third-party tester a fee, as determined by the department, that is sufficient to defray the actual costs incurred by the department for administering and evaluating the third-party testing program, and for carrying out any other activities deemed necessary by the department to ensure sufficient training for the drivers participating in the program.

(3) Except as provided in Section 15250.3, the tests given by the third party shall not be accepted in lieu of tests prescribed and conducted by the department for applicants for a passenger vehicle endorsement specified in paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) of Section 15278, if the applicant operates or will operate a tour bus.

(d) Commercial driver’s license applicants who take and pass driving tests administered by a third party shall provide the department with certificates of driving skill satisfactory to the department that the applicant has successfully passed the driving tests administered by the third party.

(e) If a driving test is administered to a commercial driver’s license applicant who is to be licensed in another state pursuant to Section 383.79 of Subpart E of Part 383 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations, the department may impose a fee on the applicant that does not exceed the reasonable cost of conducting the tests and reporting the results to the driver’s state of record.

(f) Implementation dates for the issuance of a commercial driver’s license pursuant to this chapter may be established by the department as it determines is necessary to accomplish an orderly commercial driver’s license program.

(g) Active duty members of the United States Armed Forces, members of the military reserves, members of the National Guard who are on active duty, including personnel on full-time National Guard duty, personnel on part-time National Guard training, and National Guard military technicians (civilians who are required to wear military uniforms), and active duty personnel of the United States Coast Guard are exempt from all commercial driver’s license requirements and sanctions, as provided in Section 383.3(c) of Subpart A of Part 383 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations when operating motor vehicles for military purposes. This exception shall not apply to United States Armed Forces reserve technicians.

(Amended by Stats. 2013, Ch. 649, Sec. 4. (AB 1047) Effective January 1, 2014.)

15250.3.
  

The department may allow any employee of an organized camp, as defined in Section 18897 of the Health and Safety Code, regulated by the Public Utilities Commission pursuant to Chapter 8 (commencing with Section 5351) of Division 2 of the Public Utilities Code to operate a tour bus pursuant to employment by the operator of that organized camp, if that employee satisfies the requirements for a class B license and a passenger vehicle endorsement by passing a test administered by a third party in accordance with subdivisions (c), (d), and (e) of Section 15250.

(Added by Stats. 1992, Ch. 208, Sec. 2. Effective January 1, 1993.)

15255.1.
  

(a) Except as otherwise specified in subdivisions (b) and (c), upon an application for an original commercial driver’s license, a fee of sixty-four dollars ($64), and on and after January 1, 2010, a fee of sixty-six dollars ($66), shall be paid to the department for a license that will expire on the fifth birthday of the applicant following the date of the application. A fee of sixty-four dollars ($64), and on and after January 1, 2010, a fee of sixty-six dollars ($66), shall also be paid to the department upon an application to change a license classification or to remove a restriction if the change or removal requires a driving-skill test and the license will expire on the fifth birthday of the applicant following the date of the application.

(b) Upon application for an original commercial driver’s license or for the renewal of commercial driver’s license by a currently licensed class A or class B, or class A or class B, driver who meets the driver record requirements and all other requirements established by Section 383.77 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations, a fee of thirty-four dollars ($34), and on and after January 1, 2010, a fee of thirty-nine dollars ($39), shall be paid to the department for a license that will expire on the fifth birthday of the applicant following the date of the application.

(c) Upon application for an original class C commercial driver’s license or for the renewal of a class C commercial driver’s license which requires an endorsement as provided in Section 15278, a fee of thirty-four dollars ($34), and on and after January 1, 2010, a fee of thirty-nine dollars ($39), shall be paid to the department for a license that will expire on the fifth birthday of the applicant following the date of the application.

(d) Following failure in taking a driving-skill test, a fee of thirty dollars ($30) shall be paid to the department for each subsequent administration of the driving-skill test required by the application.

(Amended by Stats. 2009, 4th Ex. Sess., Ch. 10, Sec. 16. Effective July 28, 2009.)

15255.2.
  

Upon application for a duplicate commercial driver’s license by a currently licensed class A or class B driver, or a class C commercial driver’s license which requires an endorsement as provided in Section 15278, from an applicant who meets the driver record requirements and all other requirements established by Section 383.77 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations, a fee of twenty-seven dollars ($27), on and after January 1, 2010, a fee of twenty-nine dollars ($29), shall be paid to the department.

(Amended by Stats. 2009, 4th Ex. Sess., Ch. 10, Sec. 17. Effective July 28, 2009.)

15260.
  

(a) Any applicant for a commercial driver’s license who does not successfully complete the air-brake component of the knowledge test, or who does not successfully complete the driving-skill test in a vehicle or combination of vehicles equipped with air brakes, shall, if otherwise qualified, receive a commercial driver’s license that restricts the licenseholder from operating a commercial motor vehicle equipped with air brakes.

(b) To remove the restriction described in subdivision (a) from a commercial driver’s license, the driver is required to make a new application for a commercial driver’s license, and, in addition to any other requirements specified in this code, to successfully complete the air-brake component of the knowledge test prescribed by the department, and to pass the driver-skill test in a vehicle or combination of vehicles equipped with air brakes.

(c) For the purposes of the driving-skill test and the restriction described in this section, air brakes shall include any braking system operating fully or partially on the air-brake principle.

(Added by Stats. 1988, Ch. 1509, Sec. 9.)

15263.
  

(a) Any applicant for a commercial driver’s license who successfully completes the driving-skill test in a vehicle or combination of vehicles equipped with an automatic transmission, shall, if otherwise qualified, receive a commercial driver’s license that restricts the licenseholder from operating a commercial motor vehicle or combination of vehicles equipped with a manual transmission.

(b) To remove the restriction described in subdivision (a) from a commercial driver’s license, the driver is required to make a new application for a commercial driver’s license, and, in addition to any other requirements specified in this code, successfully complete the driving-skill test in a vehicle or combination of vehicles equipped with a manual transmission.

(Added by Stats. 1988, Ch. 1509, Sec. 9.)

VEHVehicle Code - VEH5