CDL drivers, 21 or older, who wish to operate vehicles carrying hazardous materials that require placarding must have a HAZMAT endorsement on their CDL. To obtain a HAZMAT endorsement, you must demonstrate your knowledge by successfully answering a series of 30 questions regarding hazardous materials. This test is only available in English. Additionally, once you pass the knowledge test, you must apply for a Federal Security Threat Assessment by completing an Application for Security Threat Assessment and having your fingerprints taken by the State Police. PennDOT must receive federal approval to issue you a Hazardous Material endorsement from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Transportation Security Administration (TSA). CDL drivers should allow up to 90 days to complete this process.
Commercial drivers are required to recertify their HAZMAT endorsement prior to every license renewal or upon transfer of an out-of-state CDL with HAZMAT endorsement.
The HAZMAT recertification notice will be mailed to you 7 months prior to your renewal. An additional fee is required any time a HAZMAT endorsement is issued or renewed.
Pennsylvania Licensed Applicants Seeking to Obtain Their Initial HAZMAT Endorsement
Step 1: Acquire a Commercial Learner's Permit Application, a DL-11CD Self-Certification Form and a Pennsylvania Commercial Driver's Manual.
Step 2: Submit a check or money order for the appropriate fee.
Step 3: Visit a Driver License Center to receive the product over the counter or mail application and check or money order to: PennDOT, P.O. Box 68272, Harrisburg, PA 17106-8272
Step 4: A Knowledge Test Authorization will be issued to you through the mail within 7 to 10 working days after your DL-31CD has been processed.
Step 5: You will be required to pass a HAZMAT Knowledge Test, which consists of 30 questions.
Step 6: Immediately after passing the Knowledge Test, you will have to apply for a Federal Security Threat Assessment.
Please note that the PA State Police will no longer be completing the fingerprinting portion of the assessment.
Beginning August 12, 2013, PennDOT transitioned the fingerprinting process over to 3M Cogent, a vendor who is on statewide contract and has been approved by the FBI.
The STA fee will remain at $60; however, the $34 Transportation Security Administration's fee will be paid to PennDOT and the $26 FBI fingerprinting fee will be collected by 3M Cogent.
The Federal Security Threat Assessment Process consists of:
- Providing proof of U.S. citizenship or appropriate immigration status
- Completing the Security Threat Assessment Application
- Paying the $34 Transportation Security Administration fee for the Federal security threat assessment. This fee will be collected at the PennDOT Driver License Center. Your check or money order must be made out to "PennDOT".
- You will be issued a Fingerprint Authorization Letter (Pub 512), which outlines the necessary steps to completing the required background checks.
- You will be required to pre-register with 3M Cogent before visiting a site for fingerprinting. Pre-registration can be completed by visiting www.cogentid.com or by calling 3M's scheduling line at 1-888-439-2486. The $26 fee (covering the FBI) will be collected by 3M Cogent either at the time the CDL holder pre-registers to have their fingerprints taken or at a 3M Cogent fingerprint location.
- For additional information relating to fingerprint locations and whether a fingerprinting appointment is required, visit www.cogentid.com and look under "Print Locations and Hours" for more information.
Step 7: After you pass all testing and PennDOT receives federal approval, a camera card or photo CDL will be issued with the HAZMAT endorsement on it.