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A commercial driver’s license isn’t just a license to operate a commercial vehicle, but it’s also your key to a lifetime of job security. Professional drivers are always in demand, and trucking companies pay top-dollar for highly-trained CDL holders. That’s why enrolling in truck driving school is one of the best things you can do for your career. If you’re curious about earning your CDL and being eligible for the numerous truck driver jobs in Portland and the Pacific Northwest, read on for answers to some of the most common questions regarding commercial driver’s licenses and the trucking profession as a whole.

Q: How old must I be to obtain my CDL?

A: In order to obtain your CDL in Oregon and Washington you must be at least 18 years of age. However, note that drivers must be at least 21 years old before they can drive commercial trucks across state lines. If you are not yet 21 years of age, you can obtain your CDL and gain experience driving trucks within your own state until you’re ready to drive across country.

Q: Do I need to attend truck driving school to obtain a CDL?

A: The DMV does not require that drivers enroll in truck driving school prior to obtaining their CDL, but it is highly recommended that anyone interested in becoming a truck driver enroll in a program that will teach them how drive commercial vehicles professionally. Not only will you learn the skills needed to pass the CDL knowledge exam and driving test but you’ll also develop the skills trucking companies are looking for in new hires. Truck driving schools also typically offer their graduates with job placement assistance, which means you can start earning a living as a truck driver as fast as possible.

Q: Will I need to pass a physical?

A: In order to qualify for a CDL in Oregon and Washington, drivers must undergo a physical and receive a medical examiner’s certificate that proves they meet minimum federal medical standards for commercial truck drivers. You will also need to pass a vision screening before you can take the driving portion of the CDL exam.