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Truck driver training rule delayed by Trump order

New Jersey residents who are just receiving their commercial driver's licenses will not have to comply with a new entry-level driver training rule. A memorandum that was issued by President Trump on Jan. 20 delayed the implementation of new rules that were written by the Obama administration. The Minimum Training Requirements for Entry-Level Commercial Vehicle Operators was scheduled to go into effect on Feb. 6, but it has been pushed back to March 21.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced the delay of the driver training rule and said that implementation of the rule could be delayed even further than March. Given that the rule will only apply to new truck drivers getting their CDLs on Feb. 7, 2020 or later, the delay will not affect compliance.

The rule will set a mandatory driver training curriculum for new truckers that are applying for their CDLs. A national registry of certified truck driving trainers will also be established. A controversial aspect of the new rule is that it does not contain a minimum number of behind-the-wheel training hours for new truck drivers. The rule initially had a requirement for 30 behind-the-wheel training hours, but the final draft did not include that provision.

A new truck driver who has not received adequate training may cause an accident by making a driving mistake. If a victim was injured because of a truck driver's negligent or reckless behavior, the victim may sue the truck driver for damages. In many semi truck accident cases, the driver's employer also holds financial responsibility for the victims' injuries.

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