Started Truck Driver Training School Today!

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Joe S.'s Comment
member avatar

I took the plunge today. I started truck driver training school today. I was informed last week by the place that I was employed with that they were not going to renew my contract with them on August 1st. Gave me an 8 day notice after 9 years with them. I cleaned out my office and told them thank you. I called The International Truck Driving School at Austin Community College today and inquired about their truck driving school and the director told me that a new class started today and we would be more than be happy to start me now. Was I impressed!

I rushed to their medical doctor, passed the DOT physical, paid my fees and got to class by noon. It's a five week course that is certified and there are 10 students in the class.

I have driven fire trucks for over 25 years as a professional fire fighter but I know this will be different.

I will try to keep everyone posted on my success.

Later

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.

Big Scott's Comment
member avatar

Congratulations. Good luck. Have you seen this? High Road Training Program It's the best study guide for getting your permit and endorsements. And this is our basic starter pack.

We are here to offer you help, advise and motivation.

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.
Joe S.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the encouragement Big Scott. I have been studying for my CDL license using the High Road Training Program and soaking up as much information as I can.

Any ideas or other information that will assist me I would be very grateful.

Thanks everyone!

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.
Patrick C.'s Comment
member avatar

For now one step at a time. I would say start making a list of what you desire. What kind of freight, what home time options. What is the Rider policy, What allowances for comfort. APUs , OptiIdle, Park Smart, Inverter Policy, etc...

Make a list of your wants and desires.

Simple starters. Type of freight. Solo or Team Regional or OTR.

Those 3 questions will narrow the field considerably.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

APU:

Auxiliary Power Unit

On tractor trailers, and APU is a small diesel engine that powers a heat and air conditioning unit while charging the truck's main batteries at the same time. This allows the driver to remain comfortable in the cab and have access to electric power without running the main truck engine.

Having an APU helps save money in fuel costs and saves wear and tear on the main engine, though they tend to be expensive to install and maintain. Therefore only a very small percentage of the trucks on the road today come equipped with an APU.

APUs:

Auxiliary Power Unit

On tractor trailers, and APU is a small diesel engine that powers a heat and air conditioning unit while charging the truck's main batteries at the same time. This allows the driver to remain comfortable in the cab and have access to electric power without running the main truck engine.

Having an APU helps save money in fuel costs and saves wear and tear on the main engine, though they tend to be expensive to install and maintain. Therefore only a very small percentage of the trucks on the road today come equipped with an APU.

Joe S.'s Comment
member avatar

Finished day 3 of classroom work at school. Lots of information and tests. The instructor will go through a set of slides them it's test time. No open book tests. It's study the CDL manual. Repetition, repetition, repetition. I have already learned a lot from studying from this site. Take the four written tests on Friday to obtain my permit then it will be time to practice in the trucks.

The different reps from the big trucking companies are dropping by with doughnuts and breakfast tacos to tell us about their companies. The instructor drove for Werner so she is partial to them.

That's all for now.

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.
John M.'s Comment
member avatar

I hope to be in your shoes soon joe!!

Joe S.'s Comment
member avatar

Today was the last day of class room. Tomorrow is test day for my CDL learner's permit. Going to study most of the night.

Wish me luck!

Will let everyone know how I did.

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.
Rob's Comment
member avatar

Today was the last day of class room. Tomorrow is test day for my CDL learner's permit. Going to study most of the night.

Wish me luck!

Will let everyone know how I did.

You'll do great joe! I took my permit test today and honestly doubted myself but ended up only getting 3 wrong out of 95 overall (50 for general knowledge, 25 airbrakes, 20 combo) in Iowa. Just remember to read the questions slowly and take your time, 2 of the questions I missed were because I skipped over the word "NOT". I Did have a time limit, but it was 240 minutes (4 hours) so you definitely have plenty of time.

YOU GOT THIS!!

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.
Pete B.'s Comment
member avatar

Joe, awesome man! Good for you! I know you passed the tests, so good luck with the driving, backing, downshifting... if you do have any issues with any of the above, relax, with practice behind the wheel you'll learn it all well enough to get your CDL , and then with your new job & company, the real training will begin. Looking forward to reading about your progress, especially as you've already driven Very Big Trucks.

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.
Last Shadow's Comment
member avatar

Welcome, remember everything that will worried you in the next few weeks will become second nature, I have been driving for 11 months now I took a 4 month break in between, but it will all work its self out, stay motivated and due a real strict research on whatever company you will start with, don't leave any questions you ask yourself about that company unanswered, good luck.

I took the plunge today. I started truck driver training school today. I was informed last week by the place that I was employed with that they were not going to renew my contract with them on August 1st. Gave me an 8 day notice after 9 years with them. I cleaned out my office and told them thank you. I called The International Truck Driving School at Austin Community College today and inquired about their truck driving school and the director told me that a new class started today and we would be more than be happy to start me now. Was I impressed!

I rushed to their medical doctor, passed the DOT physical, paid my fees and got to class by noon. It's a five week course that is certified and there are 10 students in the class.

I have driven fire trucks for over 25 years as a professional fire fighter but I know this will be different.

I will try to keep everyone posted on my success.

Later

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.

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