Texas Driver License Endorsements and Restrictions
In the state of Texas, certain special categories of drivers can be granted endorsements by the government allowing them to perform sensitive tasks not covered by the usual license conditions. You can think of it as the opposite of a license restriction, which are handed out far more often, and single out the carriers for extra scrutiny. An endorsement from the DPS means you have been judged worthy of special privileges as a driver.
For example, under the law, the driver of a school bus is considered to be in a special category. School bus drivers are responsible for the safety of dozens of children on a daily basis, and their skills and character have to be vetted before their license is issued. Until they receive their endorsements, they’re not able to take a job in their field.
Endorsement Codes in Texas Are as Follows:
- H: This endorsement code authorizes the driver to transport hazardous material, which requires a special training and careful attention. It’s only granted to holders of a commercial drivers license (CDL).
- N: This endorsement code authorizes the driver to operate a tank vehicle, which requires specialized training not covered by any ordinary drivers ed course. It’s only granted to CDL holders.
- P: This endorsement code authorizes the driver to operate a vehicle carrying passengers, such as a city bus. It demands training in passenger safety and large vehicle maneuvering. It’s only granted to CDL holders.
- S: This endorsement code authorizes the driver to operate a school bus, a task with high expectations from children, parents, the community, and the government. It’s only granted to CDL holders.
- T: This endorsement code authorizes the driver to tow 2 (also called double) or 3 (also called triple) trailers over a specified weight. This is the only DPS endorsement available to non-commercial drivers.
- X: This endorsement code authorizes the driver to operate a combination of hazardous material and tank vehicle, a task with unique applications to the military and industrial sectors (CDL only).
Endorsements carry the weight of law and allow you to participate in work that requires special dispensation, but they can be revoked if you violate any of the conditions. DPS-endorsed drivers are held to a higher standard, so be especially mindful of your driving habits. If you’re interested in applying for a job that asks for a drivers license endorsement, make sure you meet all the requirements before you move forward.