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Florida CDL Handbook: Trailer

With the Florida CDL Driver Handbook, you can study up on the issues that specifically relate to earning your CDL endorsement.

Florida CDL Handbook: Trailer

Table of Contents

11. Pre-Trip Vehicle Inspection

11.4.1 - Trailer Front

Air/Electrical Connections

  • Check that trailer air connectors are sealed and in good condition.
  • Make sure glad hands are locked in place, free of damage or air leaks.
  • Make sure the trailer electrical plug is firmly seated and locked in place.

Header Board

  • If equipped, check the header board to see that it is secure, free of damage, and strong enough to contain cargo.
  • If equipped, the canvas or tarp carrier must be mounted and fastened securely.
  • On enclosed trailers, check the front area for signs of damage such as cracks, bulges, or holes.

11.4.2 - Side of Trailer

Landing Gear

  • Check that the landing gear is fully raised, has no missing parts, crank handle is secure, and the support frame is not damaged.
  • If power operated, check for air or hydraulic leaks.


  • If equipped, check that doors are not damaged. Check that doors open, close, and latch properly from the outside.
  • Check that ties, straps, chains, and binders are secure.
  • If equipped with a cargo lift, look for leaking, damaged or missing parts and explain how it should be checked for correct operation.
  • Lift should be fully retracted and latched securely.


  • Look for cracks, broken welds, holes or other damage to the frame, cross members, box, and floor.

Tandem Release Arm/Locking Pins

  • If equipped, make sure the locking pins are locked in place and release arm is secured.

11.4.3 - Remainder of Trailer

Remainder of Trailer

  • Please refer to Section 11.2 of this manual for detailed inspection procedures regarding the following components:
    • Wheels.
    • Suspension system.
    • Brakes.
    • Doors/ties/lift.
    • Splash guards

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