Getting Back Into Driving

Topic 18246 | Page 1

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NightOwl's Comment
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Reading through the forum, I have read a lot about driving school-vs-company trained-vs-on your own. I have had my Class A for 17 years, drove for two years before relocation and job change. Haven't been back in a rig since. I have most endorsements needed today. What would be the better option to be brought up to hireable compliance?

G-Town's Comment
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Don wrote:

Reading through the forum, I have read a lot about driving school-vs-company trained-vs-on your own. I have had my Class A for 17 years, drove for two years before relocation and job change. Haven't been back in a rig since. I have most endorsements needed today. What would be the better option to be brought up to hireable compliance?

Welcome Don and thanks for coming out of the shadows...

Definitely do not attempt to do this on your own, you'll need a 160 hour certificate of training in order to be qualified to drive fro most carriers. I'd suggest going the route of Company-Sponsored Training Programs. Chances are very good they will fast-track you once they realize you know what you are doing in a truck. Taking a look at Trucking Company Reviews is also a good way to get your head back in the game.

Things have changed since you were a driver...probably the biggest of which is the information found in these links:

Perhaps to a lessor extent,

The Logbook Rules (HOS)

have also changed. Beyond that,...get used to a thing called e-logs. Paper Logs are quickly being replaced. Use the search bar in the upper left corner, top of page to review previous e-log threads and archived information.

Good luck!

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Logbook:

A written or electronic record of a driver's duty status which must be maintained at all times. The driver records the amount of time spent driving, on-duty not driving, in the sleeper berth, or off duty. The enforcement of the Hours Of Service Rules (HOS) are based upon the entries put in a driver's logbook.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

Hypertension:

Abnormally high blood pressure.

Sleep Apnea:

A physical disorder in which you have pauses in your breathing, or take shallow breaths, during sleep. These pauses can last anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes. Normal breathing will usually resume, sometimes with a loud choking sound or snort.

In obstructive sleep apnea, your airways become blocked or collapse during sleep, causing the pauses and shallow breathing.

It is a chronic condition that will require ongoing management. It affects about 18 million people in the U.S.

BMI:

Body mass index (BMI)

BMI is a formula that uses weight and height to estimate body fat. For most people, BMI provides a reasonable estimate of body fat. The BMI's biggest weakness is that it doesn't consider individual factors such as bone or muscle mass. BMI may:

  • Underestimate body fat for older adults or other people with low muscle mass
  • Overestimate body fat for people who are very muscular and physically fit

It's quite common, especially for men, to fall into the "overweight" category if you happen to be stronger than average. If you're pretty strong but in good shape then pay no attention.

Company-sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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