Every state has its own laws for drivers and truckers, but what happens when your job takes you across state lines? While there is no federal commercial driver’s license, there are a few requirements you need before you tackle interstate driving. Many camper transport jobs and other professional trucking contracts will have you crossing state lines in a commercial vehicle, so it’s important to make sure you have everything you need before you hit the road. Make sure your requirements are in order with this guide on what you need to cross state lines as a truck driver.
License and Registration
Your CDL is the only license you need to drive across state lines. However, federal registration for your commercial vehicle is also at the top of the list of what you need for crossing state lines as a truck driver. Make sure you obtain a US Department of Transportation number for your commercial vehicle before you take it to another state. If you travel to another state without this registration, you can face fines, and the state might even impound your vehicle.
Every state has different regulations regarding how long drivers can operate their commercial vehicles. However, if your route takes you across multiple states, you need to follow the federal restrictions on consecutive hours of service. These regulations let you know how long you can operate your vehicle or be on duty. According to federal law, property-carrying drivers can’t drive for more than 11 hours at a time. They should also not drive after 14 hours of being on duty, even if they weren’t driving during those 14 hours. For passenger-carrying drivers, you cannot spend more than 10 hours driving. Additionally, you cannot operate your passenger-carrying vehicle after being on duty for more than 15 hours.
Like hours of operation restrictions, many states have different age requirements for their commercial drivers. Even if your state allows you to get your CDL before turning 21, federal law prevents you from operating a commercial vehicle across state lines. If a commercial driver under the age of 21 takes their vehicle into a different state, they are committing a federal driving offense. For this reason, younger commercial drivers must stick to intrastate driving until they are 21 or older per truck driver age requirements.