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Chapter 6

Chapter 6: Class D License

Who Needs a Class D License?

  • Anyone who operates a truck or truck tractor that weighs 8,000 pounds or more but less than 26,001 pounds or is more than 80 inches wide.
  • Farmers and drivers of authorized emergency vehicles who drive commercial motor vehicles, but are exempt from obtaining a commercial driver license, must obtain a Class D license.

Truck diagram

Speed Limits

All motor vehicles, with the exception of mopeds, must obey the same speed limits.

Following Distance

A truck or any vehicle towing another vehicle may not follow within 300 feet of another truck or vehicle towing a vehicle. This law does not apply to overtaking and passing, and it does not apply within cities or towns.

Stopping Distance

By law, the following vehicles must be able to stop within the distances listed.

Within 30 feet at 20 mph:

  • single-unit vehicles weighing 10,000 pounds or less.

Within 40 feet at 20 mph:

  • single-unit vehicles weighing more than 10,000 pounds.
  • all buses.
  • combination of two-axle towing vehicle (such as a truck tractor) and a trailer, with the trailer weighing 3000 pounds or less.
  • all combinations of vehicles in tow-away operations.

Within 50 feet at 20 mph:

  • all other vehicles except passenger vehicles with seating capacity of 10 people or less, including the driver.

Every trailer or semi-trailer weighing 3000 pounds or more must have brakes which can be operated by the driver in the towing motor vehicle. The brakes must be designed and connected so that they will automatically stop the trailer if it breaks away from the towing vehicle.

Lights, Side Marker Lamps, and Reflectors

Buses, trucks, truck tractors and trailers must have the following equipment:

  • Every bus or truck: On the rear, two reflectors, one at each side, and one stop light.
  • Every bus or truck 80 inches or more wide: On the front, two clearance lamps, one at each side. On each side, two side marker lamps, one at or near the front and one at or near the rear. On each side, 2 reflectors, one at or near the front and one at or near the rear. These vehicles must also have electric turn signals if built after January 1, 1972.
  • Every truck tractor: On the front, two clearance lamps, one at each side. On the rear, one stop light.
  • Every trailer or semi-trailer weighing more than 3,000 pounds: On the front, two clearance lamps, one at each side. On each side, two side marker lamps, one at or near the front and one at or near the rear. On the rear, two clearance lamps, one at each side, and two reflectors, one at or near the front and one at/or near the rear. There shall also be two stoplights on the rear of these vehicles. One stoplight is permitted on vehicles built before January 1, 1972.
  • Every pole trailer weighing more than 3,000 pounds: On each side, one side marker lamp and one clearance lamp (which may be in combination), to show to the front, side and rear. On the rear of the pole trailer or load, two reflectors, one at each side.
  • Every trailer, semi-trailer or pole trailer weighing 3,000 pounds or less: On the rear, two reflectors, one on each side.

Required Placement

Reflectors must be mounted not less than 24 inches and not more than 60 inches above the ground. If the highest part of the vehicle is less than 24 inches, the reflector should be mounted at the top of the vehicle. The rear reflectors on a pole trailer may be mounted on each side of the load.

Any required reflector on the rear of a vehicle may be part of the taillamp.

Clearance lamps must be mounted on the permanent structure of the vehicle to show its extreme height and width.

Side marker lights may be mounted at any height unless mounted in combination with clearance lamps. Then both must be able to be seen from front, side and rear.

Truck diagram

Limitations on Towing

The following rules apply to the drawbar or towing connection:

  • It must be strong enough to pull all towed weight.
  • It must not be more than 15 feet long unless you are towing poles, pipes, machinery, or other objects that cannot be easily taken apart.
  • If a chain, rope, or cable is used as the towing connection, you must have a white flag at least 12 inches square attached to it.

Limitations on Loading; Securing the Load

You may not drive or move any loaded vehicle on the highway if the load is not secure. The load must not be able to drop, shift, leak, or otherwise escape.

  • You must use a close-fitting cover when hauling loads which could fall or blow onto the roadway. Examples: dirt, sand, lime-rock, gravel, silica, trash or garbage.
  • Every truck carrying logs or pulpwood must use proper equipment, including lock chains that will securely fasten the load.

Rearview Mirror

No matter what kind of load you are carrying, you must have a rearview mirror that allows you to see the highway at least 200 feet behind you.

Projecting Load

When a load extends to the rear 4 feet or more beyond the bed or body of the loaded vehicle, it must be clearly marked.


At night or when you cannot see clearly at least 1000 feet ahead, the following markers must be used:

  • Two red lamps on the back of the load which can be seen from at least 500 feet to the rear.
  • Two red reflectors on the rear which can be seen at night from all distances between 100 and 600 feet when directly in front of low-beam headlights. These reflectors should be placed to show the full width of the load.
  • Two red lamps, one on each side of the load, which can be seen from at least 500 feet. These lamps should be placed near the end of the projecting load.


In the daytime, red flags at least 12 inches square must be placed on the projecting load where red lamps are used at night (extreme rear and sides).

Directional Signal Requirements

Your vehicle must have directional signals under the following conditions:

  • When the driver's hand signals cannot be seen from both the front and rear because of the way the vehicle is built or loaded.
  • When the nearest distance from the center top of the steering post to the outside of the cab, body or load is more than 24 inches.
  • When the distance from the center top of the steering post to the rear limit of the body or load is more than 14 feet. (This applies to a single vehicle or combination of vehicles.)

Warning Devices

Vehicles 80 inches or more wide or 30 feet or more long must carry warning devices when they are being operated on any highway outside a city or town or on any divided highway at night (from 1/2 hour after sunset until 1/2 hour before sunrise). This rule applies to such vehicles as trucks, buses, truck tractors, and vehicles towing house trailers.
The following equipment must be carried:

  • Three flares, three red electric lanterns, or three red emergency reflectors.
  • Three red-burning fuses (unless lanterns or reflectors are carried).

These warning devices must be displayed when the vehicle is stopped on a roadway or on the side of a road outside a city or town for more than 10 minutes. The vehicle's four-way flashers may be used until the warning devices can be placed.


Placement of Warning Devices

warning device display: two-way roadway

All disabled trucks, truck-tractors, and buses must display emergency warning signals as shown if parked outside the city limits of a municipality.

Truck diagram



  • Able to be seen from 600' under normal conditions at night.
  • Built to burn for at least 12 hours in 5 mph wind.
  • Able to burn in winds up to 40 mph.
  • Able to withstand shock without damage.

Electric Lanterns

  • Able to be seen from Lanterns 600' under normal conditions at night.
  • Able to operate for at least 12 hours.
  • Able to withstand shocks without damage.

Free-Standing Reflectors

  • Able to reflect low-beam headlights from 100' away to 600' away.
  • Able to withstand shocks without damage.


  • Able to burn at least 15 minutes.
  • Meets specifications of The Bureau of Explosives (N.Y.)


  • A red flag, not less than 12 inches square.


Nighttime On Two-Way Roadway.

  • One 100' ahead, one 100' behind in the center of the lane where the vehicle is.
  • One on traffic side 10' to the rear or ahead of vehicle.

On Divided Highway.

  • One 200' to the rear, one 100' to the rear in the center of the lane where the vehicle is stopped.
  • One 10' to the rear on traffic side.

Electric Lanterns-Nighttime-same as flares.

Free-Standing Reflectors-Nighttime-same as flares.

Fuses-Nightime-On Two-Way Roadway

  • One lighted fuses, lantern or reflector should be placed on the traffic side of the vehicle right away. All other signals should be placed before the fuses burns out.


  • 100' ahead and 100' behind the stopped vehicle

Maximum Weights

The gross weight on the highway from the wheels of any one axle of a vehicle must not be more than 22,000 pounds.
The total weight allowed on all axles of a vehicle or combination of vehicles is determined by the number of axles and the distance between them. Vehicles with longer wheel bases and 5 or more axles may weigh up to 80,000 pounds including tolerances. For more information, see Section 316.535, Florida Statutes, or contact the Florida Department of Transportation, Bureau of Weights and Safety, Douglas Building, Room 208, 2540 Executive Center Circle West, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0450, or telephone (850) 488-7920.

Truck diagram

Maximum Width, Height and Length

Other Vehicles:

  • Maximum height of a vehicle including load: 13 feet, 6 inches.
  • Maximum width of a vehicle including load: 96 inches (8 feet). On roads with traffic lanes 12 feet wide or more, vehicles may be 102 inches (8.5 feet). Maximum length including load overhang (load overhang over front or front bumper of vehicle cannot exceed 3 feet).
  • Single unit, 2 axles — 35 fee.
  • Single unit 3 axles — 40 feet

Class D License

Exam Questions
The Class D License examination has 20 questions and 20 road signs. Some of the test questions will come from the list below; others will come from the Class E test questions in Chapter 5. You are allowed to miss not more than five questions and five road signs.

  1. Unless otherwise posted, what is the speed limit for trucks in residential districts?
  2. Who needs a Class D license?
  3. Must the registered owner of a straight truck transporting his own products have a Class D license?
  4. Unless overtaking and passing, how closely may one truck follow another truck on an open highway?
  5. If a trailer covers the stoplight of the towing vehicle, where else must a stoplight be?
  6. Where should reflectors be mounted?
  7. Give three examples of loads that need to be covered due to falling or blowing on roadway.
  8. How many feet to the rear should you be able to see objects through the rearview mirror regardless of load?
  9. When one vehicle is towing another by means of a chain, what does the chain need to have displayed on it?
  10. How long can the drawbar be between the towing vehicle and the vehicle being towed?
  11. If a driver transporting flammable gases approaches a railroad crossing and a police officer motions him to proceed across the track without coming to a stop, what should the driver do?
  12. Assume that a load extends 4 or more feet beyond the bed or body of a vehicle driven on a highway in the daytime. How many flags must be used to mark it, and what color should they be?
  13. If a truck becomes disabled on a two lane highway during the daytime outside a city or town, where should the red flags be placed?
  14. If a truck or bus is disabled on the highway at night, when are red fuses used?
  15. The height of any vehicle may not exceed how many feet?
  16. When must warning devices be displayed?
  17. What is the maximum length for single unit trucks with three axles?

First Aid

If you come upon an accident, activate the Emergency Medical System (EMS) to insure prompt response. Then apply four first aid rules:

  1. Protect yourself from possible injury or infection — use barrier devices such as gloves and a mask..
  2. Start the breathing. If the injured person has stopped breathing, start artificial respiration right away. Do not stop until another qualified person relieves you or the victim is breathing normally..
  3. Stop the bleeding. Most bleeding can be stopped by pressing down on the wound. If possible you should place a gauze pad, a clean cloth or even your fingers (if wearing protective gloves) will have to be used. Bleeding from an artery should always be stopped first. The blood from an artery will be bright red and will come out of the wound in spurts. If the blood is darker in color and flows evenly, it is from a vein. Once the gauze or cloth is in place - DO NOT REMOVE IT..
  4. Treat for Shock. Persons who have been injured may go into shock. When someone is in shock, all of the body functions slow down. Shock can be very serious. It can cause death. Shock may develop right after a crash or later. Injured persons must be treated for shock regardless of whether or not they appear to be in shock.
    1. Reassure the injured person. Your calmness will help. Do not give them anything to drink.
    2. Cover the person with blankets or coats to hold body heat. Have the person lie flat.
    3. Keep onlookers back so that the injured person has air.
    4. Keep their head as low as possible unless there is a head injury.
    5. Loosen tight collars to make breathing easier.