All About the Tanker Endorsement

In addition to your commercial driver’s license (CDL) test, you can take endorsement tests that demonstrate your knowledge of specific skills related to truck driving. At Phoenix Truck Driving School, you will have an opportunity to take three additional exams. These are tankers, doubles/triples, and hazardous materials. The tanker endorsement, also called a tank endorsement, allows you to drive vehicles that transport liquids or gases. This can widen your range of job opportunities after graduation.

More information about the tanker endorsement:

What Vehicles Require a Tanker Endorsement?

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulates the trucking industry. They set the safety requirements that motor carriers must follow. These include rules regarding when certain endorsements are needed. 

FMCSA guidelines state that truck drivers must have a tanker endorsement to drive a tank vehicle, defined in §383.119 of the Code of Federal Regulations. A tank vehicle is a commercial motor vehicle that: 

  • Transports liquid or gaseous material of any kind
  • Carries this material in a tank or multiple tanks with individual capacities greater than 119 gallons
  • Has a total volume of liquid or gas of 1,000 gallons or more

While this does not include transporting empty tanks or intermediate bulk containers (IBCs), as of 2015, the FMCSA clarified that the definition does include dry vans that transport multiple smaller tanks of gas or liquid with a volume of 1,000 gallons or more. 

How Do You Earn a Tank Endorsement?

In order to earn your tanker endorsement, you will need to pass a CDL endorsement test. You will take this at the same time as your standard CDL exam. The tanker test is 20-30 questions and covers topics related to safely transporting liquid or gaseous materials. 

Some of the most important facts to study and understand before taking this endorsement test relate to how liquids and gases move differently than other types of freight. If you plan to drive a tanker truck, you will need to prepare for surge. This is when fluids in your truck’s tank move back and forth, even while the truck is standing still. You will need to know about baffles and bulkheads, which are dividers inside the tank that can reduce the effects of surge. The exam also covers smooth bore tanks, which are commonly used for transporting food and which can increase the sloshing of liquids in the tank.

Combining CDL Endorsements

When you earn the tanker endorsement alone, it is marked as an “N” endorsement on your CDL. If you earn your hazardous materials (hazmat) endorsement at the same time, the two combine and are marked as an “X” endorsement. Many jobs transporting hazmat require both. If you attend Phoenix Truck Driving School, we will help you learn the information needed to pass both the tanker and hazmat tests. 

Earn Your Tanker Endorsement at Phoenix Truck Driving School

Our CDL school gives you the skills and knowledge you need to succeed as a truck driver. These include the basics you need to pass your CDL test as well as additional information to earn three endorsements. 

Contact us today to learn more about earning your CDL, hazmat, doubles/triples, and tanker endorsements at Phoenix Truck Driving School.

Hauling Hazmat: What You Should Know

There are many different types of truck driving jobs that you can start once you earn your commercial driver’s license (CDL). Each type of freight or route has different benefits. Before you begin your trucking career, you should consider your goals and decide what kind of CDL job you would prefer. Hauling hazardous material (hazmat) is one option and jobs involving potentially hazardous freight often pay more. 

Here is what you should know if you are considering a career hauling hazmat:

What is Hazmat?

The Institute of Hazardous Materials Management (IHMM) defines hazmat as any item or agent with the potential of causing harm to the environment, animals, or humans. Dangerous goods need to be identified according to strict safety standards and anyone transporting them must meet certain qualifications.

There are 9 broad categories of hazardous materials: 

  • Explosives
  • Gases
  • Flammable Liquids
  • Flammable Solids
  • Oxidizing Substances
  • Toxic and Infectious Substances
  • Radioactive Materials
  • Corrosives
  • Miscellaneous Dangerous Goods

In the trucking industry, one example of hazmat is gasoline. Gas tankers are necessary to bring fuel to gas stations across the country and qualified drivers for these vehicles are in high demand. Most industries interact with hazardous materials in some way and as a result, there are a wide variety of hazmat trucking jobs. 

Safe Truck Driving

Safety is essential in any industry and it is especially important for truck driving. When you haul freight, you are responsible not only for protecting yourself and the goods you are transporting, but also for ensuring the safety of others on the road. When it comes to hazmat, there are even more factors to keep in mind. This is why jobs involving hazmat require additional qualifications.

Hazmat Endorsement

You can add CDL endorsements to your license by taking additional knowledge tests. These exams cover information related to truck driving safety beyond what is included in the standard CDL test. Some truck driving jobs require an endorsement or multiple endorsements. Hauling hazardous freight is one example. As a student at Phoenix Truck Driving School, you can earn your hazmat endorsement. 

It’s important to note that you will need to undergo an additional background check to earn this endorsement. Unlike the background check to obtain your CDL, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will complete the screening process, not the Department of Transportation (DOT). Certain offenses can disqualify you and the TSA lists these on their website. Additionally, federal law prohibits you from applying for the hazmat endorsement until you are 21 years old. 

X Endorsement

In addition to the hazmat endorsement, some jobs will require what is called an “X” endorsement. This is the combination of a hazmat and tanker endorsement. Our students earn both of these, giving them more employment options after graduation. 

Start a Hazmat Driving Career

If you are interested in a career hauling potentially hazardous freight, you can get started at Phoenix Truck Driving School. Our program allows you to earn your CDL as well as endorsements for hazardous materials, tankers, and doubles/triples. We teach you the safety and operation skills you need to succeed as a truck driver. 

Contact us today to learn more about our truck driving school and how we can help you become a hazmat truck driver.