ELDT is an acronym from the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration), you know, the ones that control all training and licensing aspects for obtaining a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). They love acronyms!

Anyway, ELDT simply stands for “Entry Level Driver Training”. On February 7, 2022, the FMCSA created an FMCSR (Federal Motor Carrier’s Safety Regulation), which mandates that all new applicants for a commercial driver’s license undergo certified training from a registered training provider BEFORE they may obtain a CDL. You may read the details of this FMCSR by clicking HERE. Likewise, you can download the ELDT Applicability Factsheet for an easier understanding if the ELDT mandate applies to you.

The State is not permitted to administer a Skills or Knowledge test to a driver if they first have not verified the FMCSR requirements have been met. Yes, ELDT Academy IS a registered training provider.

In a nutshell, ELDT training is broken into three (3) sections: Theory, Range Skills, and Road Skills.

Theory training consists of the classroom, or educational bookwork that is relevant to the class CDL one wishes to hold.

  • Class A requires General Knowledge theory and Combinations theory. However, if the vehicle is equipped with Air Brakes (which vehicles over 26,000 lbs. must have), then Air Brakes theory is also required.
  • Class B requires General Knowledge theory. However again, if the vehicle is equipped with Air Brakes (which power units over 26,000 lbs. must have), then Air Brakes theory is also required.
  • Class C requires General Knowledge theory, and whatever endorsement(s) needed that require the Class C license.

Some endorsements, like Hazmat (H), Passenger (P), and School Bus(S), also require ELDT theory training. Although, Passenger (P) and School Bus (S) will also require additional Range and Road Skills training.

Range Skills training consists of Pre-Trip Vehicle Inspection and Backing maneuvers.

  • Pre-Trip Vehicle Inspection requires the candidate to inspect certain parts of the vehicle for good operation and condition. In doing so, they will name the parts, identify what to inspect for, and have an understanding of why you are inspecting it.
  • Backing requires the candidate to make certain maneuvers in a backwards movement. Depending on the inspection method used, they will have to negotiate 3 to 4 backing maneuvers on a closed course.*

*This section has recently underwent new changes. Depending on the state or locality, they may utilize the traditional method, or the new modernization method implemented by AAMVA (American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators). We’ll help determine which method is used in the training and testing area.

Road Skills training consists of driving the CMV in the general motoring public, performing a series of certain maneuvers such as left turns, right turns, lane control, speed control, curves, railroad crossings, emergency stopping, use of signals, constant traffic checks, and overall safe driving techniques. If applicable, they may also have to demonstrate passenger pick-up and discharge.

Once all these skills are accurately demonstrated within the guidelines, we, as a registered and certified training provider, will record the scores in the FMCSA’s TPR (Training Provider Registry), which will permit the candidate to take the state CDL exam.