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FMCSA wants industry’s help in producing ‘reg neg’ driver training rule

| August 18, 2014

In an attempt to satisfy requirements of the current MAP-21 highway funding law, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration says it is checking the feasibility of producing a required entry-level driver training rule as a “negotiated rulemaking,” or “reg neg.”

The reg neg would allow stakeholders to participate in the rulemaking process as a means to expedite the creation of the rule. FMCSA says participants could include “driver organizations, driver training organizations, [carriers], industry associations, state licensing agencies, state enforcement agencies, labor unions, safety advocacy groups and insurance companies.” 


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The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association announced this week the two main items it is pushing Congress to include in its next highway bill: Bolstering training ...

FMCSA’s proposed reg neg plan is accepting public comment on for 30 days, beginning Aug. 19. Click here to submit a comment. 

The agency has hired a convener to talk with interested parties about their ability to participate, it says.

To begin work on a reg neg rule for entry-level driver training, the agency says it needs to determine whether it can form an “appropriate advisory committee…that would fairly represent all affected interests.”

The convener hired by the agency — Richard Parker of the University of Connecticut School of Law — will be tasked with doing that, and he’ll submit a report to the agency on his findings.

The agency says if it does proceed with the reg neg process, it will establish a committee, per federal law, and publish a notice stating it will be taking comment on membership.


FMCSA scraps old training proposal, embarks on new rulemaking

FMCSA withdraws its 2007 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Entry Level Driver Training in favor of developing another proposal.

FMCSA had a rulemaking in the works until Sept. 2013, when it was pulled from its docket, based on changes required by MAP-21 and feedback from the agency’s Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee.

The agency published that proposed rule in 2007, but never issued a final rule after accepting public comment. 

That rule would have set standards for classroom training and behind-the-wheel training, and it would have barred states from issue CDLs unless applicants presented a valid certificate from an accredited training institution or program, the agency says.

MAP-21 required the agency to produce the rule by Oct. 1 of last year.

  • Tom Rausch

    Right on – better training with standardization along with optimum placement of new drivers would solve a lot of current issues with the shrinking workforce. I own a CDL school, approved by the State of Colorado and we train, as a minimum standard, the Entry Level program as established by the Professional Truck Driver Association.

  • sthomas1957

    Required training would probably be a net good thing. A lot of older drivers tell anecdotes about how they learned how to drive a truck on their uncle’s farm, etc., without any training, and if things were as simple today, great. But they’re not, and too many drivers out there don’t know even some of the most basic rules for having a CDL.
    There probably ought to be some special training for brokering loads, too, because there are an awful lot of brokers trying to get drivers to deliver freight in ridiculously short time frames.

  • jim stewart

    Suppose some type of common sense test should first be required before acquiring a CDL?? From what I see on a daily basis out here I’m afraid the failure rate would be astronomical.

  • guest

    They need to train the new drivers using a Shock Collar around his neck and a Camera in his face as he drives. Comply, Obey, Conform
    is all he needs to know.

  • guest

    Yep no IQ test is required…plain to see. lol

  • Jeramie Reed

    The first thing they must do is start enforcing the current laws unilaterally. Not selectively as they do now. Secondly, no more interpreters for cdl testing. The law says must demonstrate ability to speak, read, and write the English language at or above the 12the grade level to obtain a CDL. If the person can do this testing in their own or native language is unnecessary. I see far to many driving out here that can’t speak even rudimentary English.

  • L.G.

    First set the standard for those that will be doing the training (can’t pass knowledge if you have none yourself) then set the standard of those being trained, that is COMMON SENSE!

  • guest

    The driver must be told he will be an obediant slave and must obey, comply, conform and kiss butt all day for Low Pay….see if he is still interested in the crazy “training program”.lol

  • guest

    You will notice that NO LAWMAKER’S son will EVER work as a truck driver…it is a job for the “unfortunates”…lol

  • guest

    Any young person with a BRAIN would get a REAL CAREER and certainly NOT pursue trucking as a logical career choice. It is rediculous for any young person to consider “trucking” as a career today…..who would ALLOW their child to go into such a LOSER job?

  • JPMinn

    i doubt than anything sensible, practical or right will come of it with FMCSA involved.

  • Brian Carlson

    Well Halleluiah!
    The gates of Trucking Heaven have opened. Now, make it hard to get in. I mean hard.Then teach them to have some mechanical aptitude. Give them a grease gun. Teach them how to change an alternator, starter, belts, lights, mud flaps the list goes on. Then make it so companies will trust them to do the work. Then pay the driver for his time to do it. Save everyone money.
    That’s all part of trucking. Not steering wheels and cell phones. Teach them to respect the truck and trailer as though it was their very own.
    Then slap a professional badge on the left chest of a decent shirt. Call them professional. Image of trucking changed forevermore.
    Oh, and 1 last thing. Make it law that Large Corp can’t do it anymore. No more Government kick backs. No more tax breaks. Find some other way. That’s what CPA’s are for.
    Drivers are people who need and will earn a financial future. If you give them a sense of purpose and belonging.
    Happy in Title Town today! Now have some Integrity and do what you say you are going to do. If they have trouble with that word. Its the Consistency between, Words, Thoughts and Action.
    Founder and Chairman,

  • guest

    Transport America is now begging for Student Drivers…..qualification:
    3 Accidents OK. Suspended License OK. Felony Conviction OK.
    Only the Best will Drive?????? what a sick joke…..

  • centerlaneshow

    Their is a lot that can be done with this I would have to say set a base minimum for trainers (Must Have 7 years exp to be a trainer with above basic knowledge of the driving industry) Next address the issues at the entry level aka (schools) All trucking schools must increase knowledge testing, class room time and yard time, no more 8 week courses. Yard trainers must have 7 years safe driving record, they should also be able to tell whether one is ready for the road course if not they don’t leave the yard. Min. time spent at a qualified training school should be set at 6 months minimum. For the students not being able to train properly in winter driving their should be a mandatory winter course giving by all trucking company’s. Then theirs the issue of aggressive drivers a test needs to be implemented. Also FMCSA needs to start enforcing current laws they currently over look all the time.

  • TruckerBarb

    I hope you stay out of the industry or leave if you are in it.. Your attitude contributes nothing positive. I hold a bachelor’s degree in business an have over 25 year’s experience (combined) in the communication technology and financial services. I wish I had started driving much sooner than I did. Trucking is what you make it. Do your homework, use common sense, look out for yourself, pick a company that has the support system to help you as a driver, and you have a wonderfu opportunity to see the country and get paid while doing it.

  • Tami Potirala

    Start with training these idiot 4 wheelers how to drive

  • guest

    Yep they will make it Worse! lol

  • guest

    Sure they are government sponsered to provide CHEAP LABOR….cops dont bother them….they are invited to Hop the Fence by Big Business who loves to hire them…this will continue as it has 4 years in trucking.

  • J . C.

    Well the understanding of English Lange would be a good start !

  • Shaun

    Since when has the FMCSA wanted help or input on this or any other matter?

  • norman ott

    Don’t forget the freedom of the road.

  • Drivethe2

    I’m in school now after 26years in factories. Layoffs and closing. Good pay is hard to find these days. Had interviews for two decent jobs that pay well. A retiring driver and the admissions person both said if you get offer on the jobs , take either , verse driving truck. Didn’t get offers so I’m in driving school now. Kind of funny these two people in the industry , advised against the driving If given choice between it and good normal job. After all the research I’ve done and now training, I would not want my kids to go this path if they can do better.
    Sad but between the government and bad treatment of drivers by companies, retaliation on drivers by companies, dispatchers, etc, it’s a wonder anyone does this job. Driver shortage is self inflicted by industry. I’ve never seen such bad treatment by companies , bad compensation and benefits compared to other segments of the private industry. I’m now trying to figure out which recruiter is lieing the least.

  • Dave Nichols

    we have a cdl course here by gates trade school. six months combined class and in truck. tjey turn out some good drivers. the way it should be

  • Donald Mickunas

    LMAO…. Someone has to set the standards for the people setting the standards. Oh, but someone needs to set the requirements for that person. And on it goes endlessly.


  • Donald Mickunas

    Ridiculously short time frames for loads could apply to dispatchers and load planners.

  • Donald Mickunas

    You are 40 years out of date. The modern truck is way too complex to have average drivers working on them to begin with. Second, not everyone is gifted with their hands. I will only do some things on the truck which I feel competent to do mechanically. The professionals do it far better than I can. In contrast, I prefer to work on my own computer because I get better results.

    While you can put a trainer in a truck with a driver for 30,000 miles or 1,000,000 miles. This will never guarantee what that driver will do when he gets out on his own. There are also numerous issues with the quality of the training drivers available.

    This is the 21st century. We have new technology and more complex trucks. What was fine in the 20th century falls short in the 21st century.

  • Donald Mickunas

    Which means what? The school I went to gave me enough information to pass the written test for the CDL. They also taught me enough to pass a skills test and driving test with a truck. Is that what you are teaching? Is it enough in your opinion?

  • Donald Mickunas

    Tell that to the millions of people who can’t find work today and are turning to trucking. I drive truck and I haven’t been out of work due to the recession.

  • Tom Rausch

    My instructors have had their CDL for a minimum of 30 years – also, have to have at least 2 million safe miles in order to qualify to be an instructor at CDL Safety School in Littleton, CO. We are not a driver mill – we focus on mentorship and quality training. After you graduate, we give you a toll-free number to call 24/7/365 for help, questions, further training and support for as long as you are in the transportation industry!

  • Gabby

    BULL SHIT !!

  • Gabby


  • Gabby

    HELL YA !

  • Gabby

    Train them in cab – overs only.. with 13 speeds screw them 9 speed or automatics bull 13 and 13 only.

  • Brian Carlson

    Point taken Sir. I still think we can implement some of it. It will separate the ones that want a career from the ones that want a quick buck with minimal commitment. strives to maintain an open forum for reader opinions. Click here to read our comment policy.