I have seen the post on here about this and dont see it now. We just got the Ok to get a Tower truck and I question what kind of license needed to drive it if any. Its a 95ft tower with all the bells and whistles. The truck itself is 48 ft long. Other than the pump and learning to operate the truck is there a certain license for that size of truck that is needed. I myself have the only class A on the dept. So if we need to upgrade our driver eng. we need to get them going. Thanks for any info.

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Depends on two things

A. State law. Some states have an exemption for firefighters in regards to requiring a CDL (SC is one of those states)


B. Departmental regulations. While SC doesn't require a CDL license some departments here in SC require a CDL with applicable endorsements for anyone driving fire apparatus.
Thanks Todd I'll check with the Fl DOT in the morning. I wonder about bringing it down here from VA if there would be a problem.
Ditto in NH.

The question posed should be does the fire chief want to defend his in-house driver training program when a brother who has a license for a 5,000 lb. Toyota pickup, is involved in an MVC with a 70,000 pound tower/ladder.

Liability, liability, liability...
Ye I know what you mean. Just went online with FL DOT and all anyone needs is a Class E to operate any fire vehicle in Fl. It says there exempt. Makes you wonder though. Thanks for your reply guys.
My brother is a FF in Fl and according to him, a CDL would be required if the apparatus has air brakes.
The only place to get the correct answer is your State DoT. You've been to their web site which you say states an exemption from the law for fire trucks. If you still have questions, approach them in writing to get an answer in writing! People will give answers, in good faith, that they are certain are correct; they are not always correct.

I was talking to a school teacher and his class last Monday - he had told them that he'd "been told" that there was an exemption here in country areas that allowed unlicensed people to drive a fire truck in an emergency! He had been advised incorrectly... Not only does our State law require that drivers have the correct endorsement for a heavy vehicle (our version of a CDL) but that the fire service SOP's require that drivers have the correct endorsement - and that driving lights and sirens requires at least three years licenced driving experience. If there's any doubt, or argument from other members, get it in writing from your State DoT.
Thanks TP, Yes there seems to be a grey area in the law upto 26,001lbs you dont need a license but it does not say about a 70,000lb truck other than if your a farmer hauling your own grain at 80,000lbs you dont need one. Georgia has a Non-Commercial class A and B for emergency vehicles which separate the weights that you can drive. Well go figure Fl is in the clouds. Chief says until its cleared up guess I am the driver. be safe out there.
In PA we are exempt but my chief makes drivers get cdls
I know in Massachusetts I am pretty sure you don't need any special licence, just a valid Drivers licence to drive and operate apparatus. I know all I have is a regular drivers licence and I drive the Ladder in my city along with the engines.
All we have to have is EVOC, Truck Co Opps, and have to be checked off to drive the truck
Well guys it doesn't matter now. We got it home, by me just driving it with a Class A. Had to go through all the scales between VA and FL. The only scales that had a problem were the ones here in FL, didn't like the fact that it was 48,000 on rear tandems and grossing at 70'000. Wanted to know why I was driving it around the country side. Just didn't get it. HELLO, its a ladder truck trying to get home after 725 miles. Thanks for the replies.

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