Trinity Transportation Services

Jacksonville, Florida
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This information is provided to you as a service of our ageny.  We are not associated nor do we have any connection with this program.  We do, however, support any efforts to educate your drivers and recommend this nationally recognzied program. If you would like further information, please contact TRAA at 800-728-0136.

National  Driver Certification Program

There are three levels for this Certification Program.  This is a brief description of each level:

Level 1

No training courses are required before taking Level 1 of the National Driver Certification Test. However, a Level 1 applicant must be able to establish that he/she has had at least 90 days of employment as a tow truck driver within the past five years from the date of applying to take the test. All applicants must also meet the state driving requirements of the state from which he/she is applying.

LEVEL 1 TEST: The Level 1 test consists of 110 multiple choice questions which will cover the following

· Professional Image and Personal Appearance · Types and Classifications of Towing & Recovery Equipment                             · Proper Inspection/Care of Towing & Recovery Units · Equipment Required for Proper Operation of Various Towing & Recovery   Equipment Units  · Proper Hook-Up Procedures for Autos, Vans, and Light Trucks · Loading, Securing, and Unloading a Vehicle Using a Car Carrier · Safe Driving During Towing Operations · Safety at the Scene · Equipment Used During Towing &Recovery Operations · Recoveries—Proper Winching Techniques · Procedures for Uprighting Overturns             · Special Considerations Involved in Hazardous Material Recoveries · Accident Prevention Skills · Communication Skills            · Operator Responsibilities as a Towing & Recovery Professional · Customer Service


LEVEL 1 CATEGORIES: The Level 1 test is divided into five (5) categories



Customer Service

Safety/Personal Appearance

Incident Management






Customer Care


Arrival at Scene

Safe Driver Skills

Safe Handling



Personal Appearance

Incident Type/Needs

Equipment Knowledge



Vehicle Handling

Specialized Skills

Specialized Skills

Maintenance Skills

Maintenance Skills


Level 2


REQUIREMENTS: No specific training courses are required before taking the Level 2 of the National Driver Certification Test for medium/heavy duty truck towing and recovery. A Level 2 applicant must be able to establish that he/she meets the following requirements—

1.        One year employed as a medium/heavy duty truck towing and recovery operator (20,000 … 26,001 + GVWR)

2.        Hold a commercial Driver’s License (CDL ABC)

3.        Meet all driver/operator requirements of the state from which he/she is applying

4.        Have successfully completed Level 1 of the National Driver Certification Test


LEVEL 2 TEST: The Level 2 test consists of 200 questions (true/false and multiple choice) which will cover the following medium/heavy duty towing and recovery curricula:

· Professional Image and Personal Appearance ·  Operator Responsibilities as a Towing and Recovery Professional · Personal Safety Considerations · Customer Service ·  Communication Skills · Safety at the Scene ·  Safe Driving During Towing and Recovery Operations  · Proper Procedures for Vehicle Preparation for Towing and Recovery ·  Accident Prevention Skills

·Types and Classifications of Towing and Recovery Equipment · Proper Inspection/Care of Towing and Recovery Units            ·     Incident Management ·  Special Considerations Involved in Hazmat Recoveries ·  Equipment Required for Proper Operation of Various Towing and Recovery Units ·  Proper Hook-up Procedures for Specialty Vehicles, medium/heavy truck, combinations  ·  Loading, Securing, and Unloading a Vehicle Using Carriers and Trailers ·   Cargo Concerns including Loading, Securing and Unloading ·  Proper Procedures for Uprighting Overturns ∙Recoveries—Proper Winching Techniques



Level 3

REQUIREMENTS: CDL with endorsements (air brakes, tank operations, etc.), Level 2 Master Tower Certification; HazMat awareness (endorsement of HazMat can be another bar but is not required for Level 3); 2 Years of experience as a recovery specialist, PLUS one of the following—

1.        Sponsor letter from a towing facility owner or training school verifying that the candidate is qualified to take a test of this level.

2.        Driver’s statement of experience with documentation of experience such as logbook, resume or the like.

3.        Company owner statement verifying that the driver has participated in at least 10 heavy recoveries.

One of the things that became abundantly clear in the development of the Level 3 test is that unlike Levels 1 and 2, there are, within the bounds of safety, several ways of doing a recovery. The Advisory Committee realized during the development of the test we would have to allow for a testing of the analytical abilities of the tow operator rather than the strictly factual approach as in Levels 1 and 2.


In order to do this it was decided that the test should be both written and oral. The written portion would determine whether or not the tower had the basic academic knowledge to be deemed a heavy recovery specialist. The oral would give him an opportunity to apply his knowledge to an actual incident which would be before him on a screen with accompanying an written description of the particulars, i.e., weather conditions, topography, actual damages, etc.


The following were the competency areas decided upon by the Advisory Committee:

· Truck and equipment capabilities · Attachments of heavy vehicles · Rigging · Vehicle Placement · Recovery formulas · Preparation for Towing

· Weather Conditions · Knowledge of blood-bourne pathogens · Customer relations on the scene · Fire potential driver should be alert to (vs. fire department responsibilities) · Company dispatching communications o Equipment needs o Who to contact for whatever o Reinforcements  · Company team communications on the scene · Proper maintenance of snatchblocks, etc. · Air cushion recovery (decision making) · Hydraulic recovery (decision making)

· Scene assessment (pre-planning) · Unloading (upright vs. on the ground) · HAZMAT awareness · EPA awareness (spills, water source, clean up)

· Knowledge of the drug and alcohol regulations · Command Center communications · Incident Management—who’s in charge (when) · Paperwork

o Pricing o Pictures o Preparing invoices  o Documentation







Be Safe Out There