Tow truck operators have until May 31, 2017 to obtain the newly-required permit. However, the applications must still be made before January 1, 2017.

Tow truck operators have until May 31, 2017 to obtain the newly-required permit. However, the applications must still be made before January 1, 2017.

Toronto, Ontario -- December 19, 2016 -- Effective January 1, 2017, all tow truck operators in Ontario will be required to hold a valid Commercial Vehicle Operator’s Registration (CVOR) certificate. However, Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation (MTO) has announced that a new CVOR test has been developed specifically to meet the needs of the towing and recovery industry.

The new CVOR test is only available to tow truck operators who only operate tow trucks. It cannot be used for other commercial vehicles.

The new test consists of 20 questions. A passing grade requires that 16 out of 20 questions must be answered correctly. The test questions are based on information in the Commercial Vehicle Operator's Safety Manual and include, but are not limited to, the following topics:

- Commercial Vehicle Operator’s Registration
- Ontario Specific Enforcement Issues such as speed limiters and commercial vehicle impoundment
- Periodic Commercial Motor Vehicle Inspections
- Driver and Vehicle Licensing
- Cargo Securement

Tow truck operators must bring the “CVOR Test Required” letter to DriveTest and tell DriveTest staff that you are a tow truck operator prior to writing the test. A statement from MTO says that after applicants have fulfilled all the requirements, a CVOR certificate will be sent to them.

MTO has also stated that a five month “education period” will be in place, lasting from January 1 to May 31, 2017, to assist with industry transition and avoid disruption to highway clearance activities during the winter season. This grace period is for tow truck operators who have applied for their CVOR certificate but have yet to receive it. During this time, drivers must be prepared to surrender any one of the following documents to an officer upon request:

- Copy of the ‘Written Test Required’ letter
- Copy of a completed CVOR application
- Payment receipt or copy of application if the CVOR application was submitted online

The operator is the person or legal entity responsible for all drivers and vehicles in their operation. One CVOR certificate is required for all tow trucks within an operator’s fleet. A copy of the CVOR certificate (or the original) must be carried in each tow truck operated under the CVOR. Drivers must surrender the certificate for inspection when requested by a MTO enforcement officer or police officer.

Tow truck operators are encouraged to apply for their CVOR certificate as soon as possible and carry proof of the submitted application in the vehicle until their CVOR certificate is issued. You can find the CVOR application at this link.