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Operating large vehicles, such as buses or sanitation trucks, require the operator to complete certain training and certifications. These requirements can be from local, state and federal laws as well as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Department of Transportation. 

Large vehicle operators are required to obtain a commercial driver’s license, or CDL. Employers should also require their large-vehicle drivers to maintain a good driving record and keep their CDL renewed. 

Beginning February 7, 2022, anyone seeking a CDL for the first time, upgrading their CDL from Class B to Class A for the first time or seeking a hazardous, passenger or school bus endorsement for the first time must undergo training that meets certain federally mandated standards. A medical examiner certificate indicating that the driver is medically qualified must be provided when applying for or renewing a CDL license. Random alcohol and drug testing will be conducted by the driver’s employer as well. 

In addition to licensing requirements, drivers should follow safe operating procedures. Anyone operating a large vehicle should receive training before operating the vehicle on their own. This training can detail safe operating procedures, common hazards and other safety training topics. Safe operating procedures can include how to conduct pre- and post-trip inspections as well as safe driving practices. Common hazards that drivers should be trained on include driving accidents, equipment-related injuries, ergonomic injuries and lifestyle-related diseases and injuries. Safety training topics that should be covered include bloodborne pathogens, lockout/tagout, hazard communication as well as heat and cold stress. 

For questions about operating large vehicles, contact loss control staff at losscontrol@masc.sc.