If you’re looking to drive a CMV that transports liquids, you must obtain your CDL tanker endorsement. This endorsement allows CDL drivers to operate a commercial tank vehicle that is specifically for transporting liquid or gases in a tank either permanently or temporarily attached to the vehicle. These vehicles typically include:
Additionally, the tanker endorsement is required for portable tanks, attached tanks, filled cylinders, or intermediate bulk containers that are filled with liquid. Even if these materials are transported in a dry van, drivers must have the CDL tanker endorsement.
Drivers who are operating a vehicle that fall under the falling circumstances must obtain their CDL tanker endorsement:
Cargo contains liquid or gaseous individual containers larger than 119 gallon capacity
Containers are loaded into the CMV and are not empty
Total combined volume of cargo exceeds 1,000 gallons.
To earn your CDL tanker endorsement, visit your local DMV and take the tanker endorsement test. The CDL tanker test is usually between 20-30 questions depending on the state you live in. You’ll be tested on:
How to safely and correctly haul tankers
Bulkheads, baffles, and smooth bore tanks
How to safely drive on a curve with a tanker
To prepare for the test, study your state’s CDL handbook and take online CDL tanker practice tests.
You’ll also be required to pay a small fee to obtain your CDL tanker endorsement. Typically, the cost does not exceed more than $20.
Obtaining your tanker endorsement shows that you are licensed and prepared to safely haul loads containing large amounts of liquid. Additionally, you’ll be qualified to carry higher-paying loads and have access to more job opportunities.