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Old 12-28-2013, 12:03 PM   #15
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http://dps.sd.gov/licensing/driver_l...0final_000.pdf

My comments are purely for discussion, because I live and am licensed on CA...

The original post was about getting a HDT to tow a BIG 5'er. If you get that truck, then a new license is probably the best plan.

The SD drivers handbook clearly says no CDL is needed for an RV - see the handbook above.

So, now you will want to get the upgraded license that is correct for the set-up. A non-commercial Class B in many states is specifically for tow vehicles over 26,000lb, trailers over 10,000 and 5'ers over 15,000 (plus Class A's over 40').
But, for some reason, SD does not seem to deliniate between conventional trailers and 5'ers...so that seems to make a non-commercial Class A the requirement for towing ANY 5'er over 10,000lb...even if towing it with a 1ton pick-up. That just can't be right.

But one thing is for sure, SD has Class A, B, and C licenses and there are also commercial and non-commercial licenses.

This is a dilemma. But, I commend you for taking this seriously, despite what the DMV said.
And if there was ever an accident, the police will take notice of the type license.

Maybe a call or trip to the SD State Police will provide a better answer than the DMV(?).

Best luck
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Old 12-28-2013, 12:46 PM   #16
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YEP,,, I agree you might get a better "read" on the requirement if you speak with a state patrol LEO; when you do, you might ask about which DMV station has the knowledgable staff to administer the exam for a class A, non-commercial. In Calif, we discovered there were widely different levels of understanding/knowledge even among the three DMV sites that administer the class exams -- 2 of 3 had to research their own books to learn the requirements, the other 1 of the 3 had one examiner that was very fluent.

We think anyone operating these big RV's (or HDT's) should (at least) get the training necessary to pass the class A certification (in Calif, that amounts to same test as CDL minus 3 commercial components -- written air-brake test, log book and doctor certification -- tho they do require bi-annual self-certifying medical questionnaire with doctor ID and contact info).

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Old 12-28-2013, 12:53 PM   #17
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Quote:
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Rick, before you start getting ready to head to your local DMV I would reread what was sent to you through this forum. At the very bottom it said "more about CDL" under Driver Licensing.

I read nothing into this stating "Non-CDL" (A) or (B) for South Dakota.

If someone sees something differently please let me know.
No worries.

I've had my Class B from Texas for years now but had never heard this discussion about SD.

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Old 12-28-2013, 01:54 PM   #18
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Relative to SD ONLY - NOT Texas - SD.

To my knowledge an RV never fell under commercial rules in SD. And SD does not have an "exempt" classification of license like TX and many other states do. Unless something has changed VERY recently then you can drive a private HDT used in RV service with a standard DL. NOT a CDL.

I'll admit that the regulations on the website are not clear. But going from probably hundreds of people that are doing it, that is what experience says is happening. But again, I would check with the DMV to be sure....
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Old 12-28-2013, 02:25 PM   #19
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Here is a web site that a friendly iRV2'er send me.

Were informative I think. According to this SD do not require you to take a Class A drivers license when driving in SD. Once you start moving outside the state it may be a different story.

I would absolutely love to go for a test and qualify for a Class a license, but I have yet to find a state that will allow me to do that as a tourist.
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Old 12-28-2013, 07:57 PM   #20
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The confusion comes because most states handbooks state that RV's are exempt from CDL requirements. Sadly, this gets misinterpreted and even fiercely argued that it is not necessary to have anything beyond a normal class C driver's license, to drive any RV. I had this discussion last weekend with an employee at a large RV consignment dealer. The "Gotcha" in the Texas Motor Vehicle code, and I assume in many other states, is in the description of what a Class A, B, and C operators license qualifies you to drive. This gets further complicated when personnel at the DMV don't even know the correct interpretation of the rules.
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Old 12-28-2013, 10:44 PM   #21
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Quote:
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Relative to SD ONLY - NOT Texas - SD.

To my knowledge an RV never fell under commercial rules in SD. And SD does not have an "exempt" classification of license like TX and many other states do. Unless something has changed VERY recently then you can drive a private HDT used in RV service with a standard DL. NOT a CDL.

I'll admit that the regulations on the website are not clear. But going from probably hundreds of people that are doing it, that is what experience says is happening. But again, I would check with the DMV to be sure....
If I were a betting man, I'd bet that your are absolutely right.

It just seems to me outrageous that so many states (not specifically SD, Tx or any other state) have such ambiguity on their books and obviously in their employee training materials.

You mention what "hundreds" of people are doing ... I'd wager the number is much higher than that.

It's just too bad that there is such uncertainty surrounding such an important matter.

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Old 12-28-2013, 10:53 PM   #22
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I don't think there's any ambiguity at all. A CDL is a commercial drivers license. The class A and B licenses have to do with the weight of the vehicles. If the state has a non CDL A and B licenses and there is language about vehicle weights and licenses required, I would guess that if you're driving something heavy, you're going to need a special license to drive it, regardless of what the clerk at some random office tells you.

Just my opinion.
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Old 12-29-2013, 09:46 AM   #23
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I don't think there's any ambiguity at all. A CDL is a commercial drivers license. The class A and B licenses have to do with the weight of the vehicles. If the state has a non CDL A and B licenses and there is language about vehicle weights and licenses required, I would guess that if you're driving something heavy, you're going to need a special license to drive it, regardless of what the clerk at some random office tells you.

Just my opinion.
If you can read the DMV verbiage above, and then be given conflicting information from a DMV agent and not find ambiguity... you possess comprehension and confidence I can only dream of.

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Old 12-29-2013, 11:23 AM   #24
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"If I were a betting man"...no bets required Rick....a standard DL is all that SD requires to operate a non-commercial HDT. I've been doing it legally since '07.

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Old 12-29-2013, 11:49 AM   #25
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What's a HDT?
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Old 12-29-2013, 11:49 AM   #26
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Not stirring the pot of my thread here, But if you went by weight, then most all the Class A motor coach folks would need a class a license, but since its an RV it doesn't count.
So as long as the HDT is registered as a RV, which it will, no special license required.
Hope that makes sense somewhere

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Old 12-29-2013, 12:05 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RickO View Post
If you can read the DMV verbiage above, and then be given conflicting information from a DMV agent and not find ambiguity... you possess comprehension and confidence I can only dream of.

Rick
There's another explanation. Perhaps I am just too stubborn (or not smart enough)!
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Old 12-29-2013, 12:47 PM   #28
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Well everyone I passed the drivers test. Much todo about nothing. I had to instruct the tester as to air brakes. Oh well, almost to key west in Rupert.
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