Wilson Logistics seeks exemption from learner’s permit rule

November 7, 2019

Mark Schremmer


A trucking company is asking the FMCSA for an exemption from a CDL holder being required to be seated in the front seat while a commercial learner’s permit holder is driving on public roads or highways.

Wilson Logistics, a trucking company based in Springfield, Mo., with more than 700 trucks, applied for an exemption that would still require a CDL holder to be in the truck, but not necessarily in the passenger seat. Specifically, the company is asking FMCSA for the exemption to be applied to commercial learner’s permit holders who have successfully passed the CDL skills test.

The exemption request published in the Federal Register on Nov. 6. Comments will be accepted until Dec. 6.

According to Wilson Logistics, the current rules create undue burdens on the company and its learner’s permit holders and is cost intensive.

“It was not uncommon for states to issue temporary CDLs to commercial learner’s permit holders for the return trip to collect the CDL document from their state of domicile,” the company wrote in its exemption request. “During that time, CDL holders were neither required to log themselves on duty when supervising the commercial learner’s permit holder who had a temporary CDL, nor did they always remain in the passenger seat.

“Under that scenario, the productivity of the commercial motor vehicle, the earnings capacity of the CDL and commercial learner’s permit holders and the logistics of the motor carrier’s freight network were all protected.”

Wilson Logistics said the current rules leaves it with the options of securing some mode of public transportation from the state of training to the state of domicile, or rote the team of drivers directly to the permit holder’s state. According to the company, both options create “extreme cost inefficiencies.”

Comments may be submitted at the Regulations.gov website by using docket number FMCSA-2019-0174.