Commercial Driver’s Licenses (CDLs) in the United States may have certain restrictions depending on the qualifications and limitations of the driver. These restrictions are typically denoted by letters and codes on the CDL. Below are some common CDL restrictions:
E Restriction (No Manual Transmission)
An “E” restriction indicates that the driver is not authorized to operate commercial vehicles with a manual transmission. This restriction is placed on the CDL if the driver took the skills test in an automatic transmission vehicle.
L Restriction (No Air Brake Equipped Commercial Motor Vehicle)
The “L” restriction is applied if the driver has not passed the air brake knowledge and skills test. It means the driver is not authorized to operate a commercial vehicle equipped with air brakes.
Z Restriction (No Full Air Brake Equipped CMV)
Similar to the “L” restriction, the “Z” restriction indicates that the driver is not authorized to operate a full air brake-equipped commercial motor vehicles.
M Restriction (Class A Passenger Vehicle Only)
The “M” restriction limits the driver to operating Class A passenger vehicles (buses) only.
N Restriction (Class B Passenger Vehicle Only)
The “N” restriction limits the driver to operating Class B passenger vehicles (buses) only.
K Restriction (Interstate Only)
The “K” restriction indicates that the driver is limited to operating in interstate commerce only. This restriction is applied if the driver did not pass the interstate commerce portion of the written test.
V Restriction (Medical Variance)
The “V” restriction is applied when a driver has received a medical variance from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). It indicates that the driver must carry the medical variance documentation.
X Restriction (CDL Skills Test Waiver for Military Personnel)
The “X” restriction may be applied if the driver is a military commercial vehicle operator who is exempt from taking the CDL skills test.
These restrictions help ensure that drivers are only operating vehicles for which they are qualified and have demonstrated the necessary skills. It’s important for CDL holders to be aware of any restrictions on their license and to comply with them. Restrictions can be removed or modified by passing additional knowledge or skills tests as required. As regulations may change, it’s advisable to check with the relevant state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) for the most up-to-date information.