20-37.16. Content of license; classifications and endorsements; fees.

(a) A commercial drivers license must be marked "Commercial Drivers License" or "CDL" and must contain the information required by G.S. 20-7 for a regular drivers license.

(b) The classes of commercial drivers licenses are:

(1) Class A CDL - A Class A commercial drivers license authorizes the holder to drive any Class A motor vehicle.

(2) Class B CDL - A Class B commercial drivers license authorizes the holder to drive any Class B motor vehicle.

(3) Class C CDL - A Class C commercial drivers license authorizes the holder to drive any Class C motor vehicle.

(c) Endorsements. - The endorsements required to drive certain motor vehicles are as follows:

Endorsement Vehicles That Can Be Driven

H Vehicles, regardless of size or class, except tank vehicles, when transporting hazardous materials that require the vehicle to be placarded

M Motorcycles

N Tank vehicles not carrying hazardous materials

P Vehicles carrying passengers

S School bus

T Double trailers

X Tank vehicles carrying hazardous materials.

To qualify for any of the above endorsements, an applicant shall pass a knowledge test. To obtain an H or an X endorsement, an applicant must take a test. This requirement applies when a person first obtains an H or an X endorsement and each time a person renews an H or an X endorsement. An applicant who has an H or an X endorsement issued by another state who applies for an H or an X endorsement must take a test unless the person has passed a test that covers the information set out in 49 C.F.R. 383.121 within the preceding two years. For purposes of this subsection, the term "motorcycle" shall not include autocycles. Autocycles shall be subject to the requirements under this section for motor vehicles.

(c1) Expired.

(c2) Expiration of H and X Endorsements. - Hazardous materials endorsements shall be renewed every five years or less so that individuals subject to a Transportation Security Administration security screening required pursuant to 49 C.F.R. 383.141 may receive the screening and be authorized to renew the endorsements of H or X to transport hazardous materials. Notwithstanding G.S. 20-7(f), a commercial drivers license that contains an H or X endorsement as defined in subsection (c) of this section shall expire on the date of expiration of the licensee's security threat assessment conducted by the Transportation Security Administration of the United States Department of Homeland Security. When the commercial drivers license also contains an S endorsement and the licensee is certified to drive a school bus in this State, the commercial drivers license shall expire as provided in G.S. 20-7(f). The H and X endorsements on a commercial drivers license shall expire when the commercial drivers license expires.

(d) The fee for a Class A, B, or C commercial drivers license is twenty-one dollars and fifty cents ($21.50) for each year of the period for which the license is issued. The fee for each endorsement is four dollars and twenty-five cents ($4.25) for each year of the period for which the endorsement is issued. The fees required under this section do not apply to employees of the Driver License Section of the Division who are designated by the Commissioner.

(e) The requirements for a commercial drivers license do not apply to vehicles used for personal use such as recreational vehicles. A commercial drivers license is also waived for the following classes of vehicles as permitted by regulation of the United States Department of Transportation:

(1) Vehicles owned or operated by the Department of Defense, including the National Guard, while they are driven by active duty military personnel, or members of the National Guard when on active duty, in the pursuit of military purposes.

(2) Any vehicle when used as firefighting or emergency equipment for the purpose of preserving life or property or to execute governmental functions, including, but not limited to, necessary maintenance, training, or required operation for official business of the department.

(3) A farm vehicle that meets all of the following criteria:

a. Is controlled and operated by the farmer or the farmer's employee and used exclusively for farm use.

b. Is used to transport either agricultural products, farm machinery, or farm supplies, both to or from a farm.

c. Is not used in the operations of a for-hire motor carrier.

d. Is used within 150 miles of the farmer's farm.

A farm vehicle includes a forestry vehicle that meets the listed criteria when applied to the forestry operation.

(f) For the purposes of this section, the term "school bus" has the same meaning as in 49 C.F.R. 383.5. ( 1989, c. 771, s. 2; 1991, c. 726, s. 18; 1993, c. 368, s. 4; 1993 (Reg. Sess., 1994), c. 750, ss. 4, 6; 1995 (Reg. Sess., 1996), c. 695, s. 1; c. 756, s. 5; 1998-149, s. 5; 2003-397, ss. 4, 5; 2005-276, s. 44.1(g); 2005-349, s. 9; 2011-228, s. 1; 2012-85, s. 3; 2015-163, s. 3; 2015-241, s. 29.30(g); 2018-74, s. 15.)