New Prime, part of national fleet Prime Inc. (No. 15 on the CCJ Top 250), is the latest fleet to request an exemption to allow drivers with a commercial learner’s permit who have passed the CDL skills test to drive without a CDL holder in the front seat.
New Prime has asked that such pre-CDL drivers be allowed to operate with the CDL holder in the sleeper, rather than the front of the truck, as is required by law.
The exemption would allow pre-CDL drivers for the carrier to begin work as a truck driver before returning to their home state to receive the license. The drivers for which Prime has requested the exemption have passed all necessary tests required to receive a CDL, but simply have not received their license.
Prime says the exemption would allow its new drivers to start work immediately while the carrier routes the drivers to their license-issuing state to receive their CDL.
“Allowing CLP holders who have passed the skills test to function as a team driver on the trip home enables these new operators to continue to sharpen their driving skills under the mentoring observation of a more experienced driver – and they immediately earn income,” Prime says in its exemption request.