The Missouri Dept. of Revenue (DOR) is ordering 2,000 persons who received CDLs in the state to be reexamined on evidence that they were not properly tested at two third-party testers in Sikeston and West Plains, MO.
“When our examiners do it, it takes up to two hours to take that test,” Capt. Chris Ricks of the Missouri Highway Patrol told FleetOwner. “We found out that some people were done in ten minutes—there’s no way they were testing those individuals. In West Plains there were indications they weren’t even taking the test.”
“Roughly 750 of those 2,000 people had since gone out of state—which means they attained their successful test papers [from the Sikeston or West Plains facilities], obtained a Missouri CDL, moved to another state…and attained a new license in that state,” Maura Browning, DOR spokesperson told FleetOwner. “That new state most likely would not have made them go through the testing again.”
The West Plains facility was decertified by DOR in February of this year while the Sikeston facility, known as CDTA, was decertified on April 22, 2005.
The 2,000 CDL holders who will receive the letter will be ordered to retake the test at a highway patrol facility. DOR has been sending out the letters to CDL holders who tested in the Sikeston facility since July of last year, while those tested at West Plains were sent letters beginning in April of this year.
“We’re sending 60 letters every 60 days,” explained Browning. “Each person that’s retested will be done at a highway patrol facility and highway patrol simply doesn’t have the staff to test [large groups of] people at a time. We’re cooperating by sending this out on a staggered basis.”
A representative of the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Assn. (OOIDA) noted that third-party testers are known to be less likely to be stringent on testing.
Situations like those in Missouri are “far more common than most people imagine,” Todd Spencer, executive vp of the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Assn. told FleetOwner. “I think there are CDL problems in 23 states [with regards to] testing and licenses being issued without going through appropriate procedures.
“West Plains was attracting all kinds of people that live nowhere close to the area,” Spencer continued. “They didn’t necessarily find that in the phone book. They were probably directed there.”