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Thread: CDL or NO CDL

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    CDL or NO CDL

    I know we have been over this time and time again but I gotta be honest and say that I am still confused.
    I have a semi truck and a 48' trailer that I use for my personal use. I haul my own horses and am not hauling them to a place where I make any money. It is simply for my pleasure. I travel out of my state (Michigan) and further than 150 air miles.
    One day I convince myself I need a CDL and the next day I convince myself I don't.
    Here is the exact wording taken directly from the Michigan SOS site:

    Any Michigan resident who intends to operate the following commercial vehicles is required to have a commercial driver license:
    Single Vehicles - Having a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR)* of 26,001 pounds or more.

    Combination Vehicles - Towing a trailer or other vehicles with a GVWR of 10,001 pounds or more when the gross combination weight rating (GCWR)** is 26,001 pounds or more.

    Vehicles:
    • <LI style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FILTER: ; MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt; BOTTOM: 0px; FONT-FAMILY: Arial, Helvetica">Designed to transport 16 or more people (including the driver)
    • Carrying hazardous materials in amounts requiring placarding
    *Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) is the recommended maximum total weight of the vehicle and load as designated by the vehicle manufacturer. The GVWR label is usually found on the driver side door post of the power unit and on the front left side of the trailer. The GVWR should not be confused with the elected gross vehicle weight (GVW) which is declared by the vehicle owner for registration purposes.

    **Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR) means the value specified by the manufacturer as the maximum loaded weight of a combination vehicle. In the absence of a label, the GCWR can be calculated by adding the GVWR of the power unit to the GVWR of the vehicle(s) or trailer(s) being towed.



    Exemptions

    The following people do not need a CDL:
    Active Duty Military (including National Guard): With military licenses operating military vehicles.

    Police Officers and Firefighters: Meeting approved training standards and operating authorized emergency vehicles.

    Farmers: Operating vehicles within a 150 mile radius of their farm.
    • <LI style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FILTER: ; MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt; BOTTOM: 0px; FONT-FAMILY: Arial, Helvetica">An F-endorsement is needed by farmers operating combination vehicles whose towing vehicle has a GVWR of 26,001 pounds or more. A knowledge test, but no skills test, is required to obtain the F-endorsement.
    • However, farmers who carry hazardous materials in amounts requiring placarding while operating combination vehicles whose towing vehicle has a GVWR of 26,001 pounds or more, or a single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 pounds or more, need a CDL with a hazardous materials endorsement.

    Individuals: Operating motor homes or other vehicles used exclusively to transport personal possessions or family members, for non-business purposes.


    Pretty straight forward? Not so fast. Look at that last statement. I would be an individual operating a vehicle used exclusively to transport personal possessions for non-business purposes. But, you could also interupt "other vehciles" as a vehicle that does not match ANY of the descriptions contained under 'Who needs a CDL" and under "Exemptions".
    I have heard from others who do exactly what I do and they say they have never had an issue and have been pulled over in a number of states. The question always come down to "if" the horses are yours then you are ok. Yet others say you need a CDL. Grey area at best.

  2. #2
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    And here is wording from OHIO DMV:
    CDL Exemptions

    The law exempts these categories from the CDL:
    • A "Farm Truck"; ("Farm Truck" means a truck controlled and operated by a farmer for use in the transportation to or from a farm, for a distance of no more than one hundred fifty miles, of products of the farm, supplies for the farm, or other purposes connected with the operation of the farm. The truck must be operated in accordance with Ohio Revised Code, Section 4506.02(B2) and is not used in the operation of a motor transportation company or private motor carrier.)
    • Fire equipment for a fire department, volunteer or non-volunteer fire company, fire district, or joint fire district;
    • A public safety vehicle used to provide transportation or emergency medical service for ill or injured persons; ("Public safety vehicle" has the same meaning as in divisions (E)(1) and (3) of Ohio Revised Code, Section 4511.01 ORC)
    • A recreational vehicle; ("Recreational vehicle" includes every vehicle that is defined as a recreational vehicle in Ohio Revised Code, Section 4501.01, and is used exclusively for purposes other than engaging in business or profit)
    • A commercial motor vehicle within the boundaries of an eligible unit of local government*, if the person is employed by the eligible unit of local government and is operating the commercial motor vehicle for the purpose of removing snow or ice from a roadway by plowing, sanding, or salting, but only if either the employee who holds a commercial driver's license and ordinarily operates a commercial vehicle for these purposes is unable to operate the vehicle, or the employing eligible unit of local government determines that a snow or ice emergency exists that requires additional assistance.
    • A vehicle operated for military purpose by any member or uniformed employee of the armed forces of the United States or their reserve components, including the Ohio National Guard. This exception does not apply to United States reserve technicians.
    • A commercial motor vehicle that is operated for nonbusiness purposes. "Operated for nonbusiness purposes" means that the commercial motor vehicle is not used in commerce as "commerce" is defined in 48 C.F.R. 383.5 as amended, and is not regulated by the public utilities commission pursuant to Chapter 4919., 4821., or 4923.,of the Ohio Revised Code.
    • A motor vehicle that is designed primarily for the transportation of goods and not persons while that motor vehicle is being used for the occasional transportation of personal property by individuals not for compensation and not in the furtherance of a commercial enterprise.
    Again take a look at points 7 and 8.
    I am thinking i don't need a CDL.

  3. #3
    Light Load Member
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    And then the next question is do I need a DOT #?
    I have one and have that DOT# on the truck along with 'Not for Hire".
    Pretty sure the Not for Hire needs to stay but don't think the DOT # needs to stay. I have no other markings on the truck or trailer. It does not have a farm name, city ,etc. anywhere on the truck or trailer.

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    Light Load Member jride's Avatar
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    I had a friend who was in a simular situation,alothough he found out the answer the hard way. The answer to that question in simpple terms as it was exsplained to me by my friend and the dmv is: if you are making money off of the property or goods ect.. that you are hauling, you need a cdl. say you was pulling your horse trailer moving your horses from one pasture to another, you would not need a cdl. if you was hauling someone else's horses for lets say a fee, you would need a cdl in that case also. Thats the way it was exsplained to me. hope this helps

  5. #5
    Light Load Member jride's Avatar
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    as for the dot #, i do believe if you drive it on the main highways/interstate you still have to have a dot # but im not positive.

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    Heavy Load Member kwforage's Avatar
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    I would say no, you do not need one, although why not just get one anyways? It is really not that hard to obtain, plus you already have a truck to take the test in.

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    Try answering the questions under "help me register" on this site: http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/registratio...escription.htm

    As for a CDL, I would say legally no. What if you had a big RV and you towed a big car hauler trailer with it? If you don't have to have a CDL to drive one of these, I think you're probably OK:


  8. #8
    Road Train Member rich_t's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwforage View Post
    I would say no, you do not need one, although why not just get one anyways? It is really not that hard to obtain, plus you already have a truck to take the test in.
    I agree that he may not need one based on the CDL laws in his state.

    Why not get one? Why run the risk of doubling the points on your record for a speeding ticket?

  9. #9
    Heavy Load Member kwforage's Avatar
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    Do you ever plan on needing a CDL? If so get one now. Laws are changing and soon self study will no longer be an option.

  10. #10
    Road Train Member rich_t's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwforage View Post
    Do you ever plan on needing a CDL? If so get one now. Laws are changing and soon self study will no longer be an option.
    Where are you getting that from?

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