July 3, 2013

Farmers May Have to Get CDL Under New Federal Rules

Federal legislation could soon force farmers across America to get a commercial drivers license, or CDL in the near future. Why would the Federal Government want to force you to have an additional license? What are the benefits of you having a Commercial Drivers License if you only need it to drive farm equipment, or on remote rural roads?

A Commercial drivers license is a license that you would get if you own commercial trucks and machinery, which has mainly been for over the road trucks and tractor trailers.  Now, it may be required for farm equipment as well. You migh assume that Farmers have needed them for many years, but this has not been the case, and now new federal legislation is trying to change that by forcing farmers to have one. There are currently states that are exempt to the changes, Montana is one of the states.

The cut off date for the states deciding on if they would choose if the farmers should have a CDL is coming to a close very soon. Kentucky is a state that is currently forcing a farmer to get a CDL. Why would states want Farmers to get a CDL?

Farmers handle large vehicles daily, such as tractors. They would need the special commercial drivers license to be able to drive their tractor in the road, or on the street. In the past, this wasn’t an issue, now it is. There are mixed feelings on if the federal legislation should be allowed to force farmers to get commercial drivers license. Why are there mixed opinions on the issue though?

Many people feel that in states that are rural or farming states a CDL shouldn’t be required. Most people will know that tractors and other farming equipment are driven on the rural country roads – and safety has not been a factor so far. It is normal to see farming equipment in Montana, Kentucky, parts of Ohio, Texas, and Idaho.

Do you feel that a CDL should be required? According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the changes would be for safety purposes. Would a commercial drivers license really make a difference as far as safety goes, or do you think it would just be another expense that farmers would have to pay, which would ultimately raise the price of the food they sell?

Read more:
Transportation Nation
CDL Rules
KY Department of Transportation Require Farm Workers to Get a CDL
Darwin Central: Farm Equipment to Require CDLs
Idaho Driver Services