(a)Third party tests. A State may authorize a third party tester to administer the skills tests as specified in subparts G and H of this part, if the following conditions are met:
(1) The skills tests given by the third party are the same as those that would otherwise be given by the State using the same version of the skills tests, the same written instructions for test applicants, and the same scoring sheets as those prescribed in subparts G and H of this part;
(2) The State must conduct an on-site inspection of each third party tester at least once every 2 years, with a focus on examiners with irregular results such as unusually high or low pass/fail rates;
(3) The State must issue the third party tester a CDL skills testing certificate upon the execution of a third party skills testing agreement.
(4) The State must issue each third party CDL skills test examiner a skills testing certificate upon successful completion of a formal skills test examiner training course prescribed in § 384.228.
(5) The State must, at least once every 2 years, do one of the following for each third party examiner:
(i) Have State employees covertly take the tests administered by the third party as if the State employee were a test applicant;
(ii) Have State employees co-score along with the third party examiner during CDL skills tests to compare pass/fail results; or
(iii) Re-test a sample of drivers who were examined by the third party to compare pass/fail results;
(6) The State must take prompt and appropriate remedial action against a third party tester that fails to comply with State or Federal standards for the CDL testing program, or with any other terms of the third party contract;
(7) A skills tester that is also a driver training school is prohibited from administering a skills test to an applicant who was trained by that training school. Exception: When the nearest alternative third party tester or State skills testing facility is over 50 miles from the training school, the SDLA may allow the training school to skills test the applicant it trained provided the individual skills test examiner did not train the applicant; and
(8) The State has an agreement with the third party containing, at a minimum, provisions that:
(i) Allow the FMCSA, or its representative, and the State to conduct random examinations, inspections, and audits of its records, facilities, and operations without prior notice;
(ii) Require that all third party skills test examiners meet the qualification and training standards of § 384.228;
(iii) Allow the State to do any of the following:
(A) Have State employees covertly take the tests administered by the third party as if the State employee were a test applicant;
(B) Have State employees co-score along with the third party examiner during CDL skills tests to compare pass/fail results; or
(C) Have the State re-test a sample of drivers who were examined by the third party;
(iv) Reserve unto the State the right to take prompt and appropriate remedial action against a third party tester that fails to comply with State or Federal standards for the CDL testing program, or with any other terms of the third party contract;
(v) Require the third party tester to initiate and maintain a bond in an amount determined by the State to be sufficient to pay for re-testing drivers in the event that the third party or one or more of its examiners is involved in fraudulent activities related to conducting skills testing for applicants for a CDL.
(vi) Require the third party tester to use only CDL skills examiners who have successfully completed a formal CDL skills test examiner training course as prescribed by the State and have been certified by the State as a CDL skills examiner qualified to administer CDL skills tests;
(vii) Require the third party tester to use designated road test routes that have been approved by the State;
(viii) Require the third party tester to submit a schedule of CDL skills testing appointments to the State no later than two business days prior to each test; and
(ix) Require the third party tester to maintain copies of the following records at its principal place of business:
(A) A copy of the State certificate authorizing the third party tester to administer a CDL skills testing program for the classes and types of commercial motor vehicles listed;
(B) A copy of each third party examiner's State certificate authorizing the third party examiner to administer CDL skills tests for the classes and types of commercial motor vehicles listed;
(C) A copy of the current third party agreement;
(D) A copy of each completed CDL skills test scoring sheet for the current year and the past two calendar years;
(E) A copy of the third party tester's State-approved road test route(s); and
(F) A copy of each third party examiner's training record.
(b)Proof of testing by a third party. The third party tester must notify the State driver licensing agency through secure electronic means when a driver applicant passes skills tests administered by the third party tester.
(c)Minimum number of tests conducted.
The State must revoke the skills testing certification of any examiner who does not conduct skills test examinations of at least 10 different applicants per calendar year. Exception: Examiners who do not meet the 10-test minimum must either take the refresher training specified in § 384.228 of this chapter or have a State examiner ride along to observe the third party examiner successfully administer at least one skills test.