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Old 12-25-2014, 05:36 PM   #1
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NY "R" Endorcement on License

Do I need a special "R" rating on my NY license to drive a 38' Class A? I am in the buffalo area and if needed, where do I take the driving test and what is involved in the test? I have heard that you must have someone with this rating or a CDL to drive your moterhome to the test for you. I would appreciate any info from anyone in the Buffalo / Niagara Falls NY area that has taken the test?
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Old 12-25-2014, 06:25 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by jrizz1 View Post
Do I need a special "R" rating on my NY license to drive a 38' Class A? I am in the buffalo area and if needed, where do I take the driving test and what is involved in the test? I have heard that you must have someone with this rating or a CDL to drive your moterhome to the test for you. I would appreciate any info from anyone in the Buffalo / Niagara Falls NY area that has taken the test?

You are under 40 feet so the issue will be what your gross vehicle weight is. If you are over 26,001 pounds you will need the R endorsement. You should be advised that very few in either law enforcement or the DMV seem to know the rules. I have found that the only Erie County DMV office that seems to know what they are doing is the office in the ECC South Campus in Orchard Park. You need to go the DMV office in Orchard Park and ask for a supervisor and explain that you want to schedule a driving test for an R endorsement. She will schedule the test for you, but for some reason known only to the DMV hierarchy, they have to set you as an unscheduled appointment as their computer system will not take an RV appointment as a scheduled road test. That being said you will be scheduled for an unscheduled appointment.

The test itself is pretty basic. They had me go to the library in OP and wait for the inspector. She came in and checked my registration, driver's license, my co-pilot's R endorsement, and my insurance card. She had me do an air brake test which was also basic. Then I just had to drive straight on Highland making absolutely sure that I came to a complete and total stop at the stop sign. Then she had me stop on a straight area and put on my flashers. She wanted me to back up using my mirrors only. The key to this part of the test is to physically get out of the rig and walk around it to make sure there are no obstructions, small animals or whatever blocking my path. I backed up maybe 100 feet and then she got back into the rig. I had to make three right hand turns and then stop back at the starting point. That was it for the driving test. Then I had to take the paperwork back to ECC South for my actual new license.

If you have any other questions, feel free to PM me.

Ed
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Old 12-25-2014, 09:51 PM   #3
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My experience to obtain the 'R' endorsement was different. Obtaining the permit was a challange. No one in the DMV office knew how to process the application until the top supervisor found the hand written procedure and the application was not placed into the computer system. At the road test, the examiner had to call his boss to find out how the test was to be performed. I did a series of turns and a parallel park. Having the rear camera on over ruled the need for a walk around before backing. No air brake questions or knowledge of same was needed. After passing the test, the DMV office had issues on how to process the new license. It took them a week to figure out that step.

We have cops as relatives, both state & local, that actually suggested that I not bother with it. The strings of ifs are that without the R and if there was an accident, if they thoroughly investigated, they might find that you were driving out of class and issue you a ticket for same. Our insurance company verbally stated that they didn't care. A lawyer might make a big deal of driving out of class. So I chose to get the R, DW said it wasn't worth the hassle. She might be right this time.....
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Old 12-26-2014, 06:09 AM   #4
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I had the exact same experience as rsflight. The hassle at initial permit issue. The examiner had to call back to the office to allow the road test when I had a CDL A co-pilot and not a "R" endorsement co-pilot. After the test I proceeded to the DMV office for final paper work for a week long trip. It took over one hour to figure out how to issue it. To top it off when I returned home from our trip I had a voice mail to call the DMV. They issued me the wrong paper work and had to return to the DMV to have them correct and reissue.

Good Luck! Persistence is necessary!

Safe travels and THE JOY IS IN THE RIDE
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Old 12-26-2014, 10:56 AM   #5
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One of the things that I have noticed since people have started to get tested for the R endorsement is that the testing seems to be getting progressively harder. I would suggest that you may want to schedule your road test as soon as possible after the snow is gone. If they keep on going more difficult with the test then it will start to approach a CDL test which I would assume would be more difficult.

A lot seems to depend on the person administering the test rather than any stated requirements. The guy who accompanied me on my test had to parallel park while I only had to show that I knew enough to use my mirrors. He also had to make a couple of hard right hand turns while I did not. I did comment to the inspector that the road she wanted me to turn onto was weight restricted so that helped me to avoid the hard rights.

One other thing, the guy who had taken the test last year was told he could not use his backup camera while the other posters who had taken the test were required to use theirs. Interesting how mixed up the test is. Kind of makes you think that it is nothing more than a money maker rather than a safety issue.
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Old 12-26-2014, 09:27 PM   #6
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I'd have to agree. I think it is probably smarter to get the endorsement. Unfortunately, not many at the Dmv really know what it is. I don't know anyone who failed the test. For me, my inspector asked many questions about the air brakes, and I had to demonstrate general driving ability including backing up using only the mirrors (no cameras) as well as a very easy parallel park. There was plenty of room. If you are really worried, get an hour or two of professional instruction from a commercial driving instructor, it will be well worth it.
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Old 12-27-2014, 07:36 AM   #7
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R endorsement

In your post you mention someone else driving your rig to the test site. You will get a permit that is like any other driving permit. You drive but a person with a r a CDs or a b( buss ) license accoummpanies. For my test I had to drive make lefts and rights,back up using mirrors and "pretend" to Parrell(sp) park. The examiner also asked about my vehicle. Height weight width, he asked questions on speed ,road markings and bridge limits. My test lasted over 45 minutes. I took it on Election Day and it may have been a mistake as I saw no other road tests were scheduled.
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Old 12-27-2014, 08:05 AM   #8
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IMHO...........anything that overrules a walk around deserves a R endorsement (RECKLESS)
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Old 12-27-2014, 11:41 AM   #9
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Thanks spsm. I missed that. I told the examiner that I had a checklist which included a walk around and that I did the checklist the day before I leave the driveway. He did ask what I checked and looked for
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Old 12-27-2014, 11:50 AM   #10
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Thanks spsm. I missed that. I told the examiner that I had a checklist which included a walk around and that I did the checklist the day before I leave the driveway. He did ask what I checked and looked for
If you had told me this , as the Examiner, I would of failed you!
And told you why, A pre trip inspection is "Not" done the day before........
It is preformed right before driving that day, everyday!
Maintenance items are done the day/days before.
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Old 12-27-2014, 12:11 PM   #11
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DITTO.... The Pre Trip inspections must be completed minutes prior to moving the vehicle not days in advance.
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