I Got My CDL-A Permit!

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Susan D. 's Comment
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I'm excited and happy about that, but it certainly didn't hapoen without jumping through multiple crazy hoops this morning. Yes, Mr. Murphy loves me,

So I get up anxious to get to the DMV office right at 8:00 am to take my test. In my county they only offer cdl written exams from 8am to 9am and 1pm to 2pm.

So I arrive and feel extremely well prepared thanks to my school and the High Road Training Program. I get to the window to hand them my drivers license and pay my fees so I can get the little card to take to a different office with the computers they give the tests on.

The lady was very nice, but informed me that my DOT medical card wasn't showing up as having been received by the states transportation cabinet. Huge let down! But then she noticed the checks from my CDL school to pay for my fees and asked me if I was in school and I told her yes. She allowed me to test (gave me the card) and took the check for testing but said she wouldn't be able to issue my permit until it was showing in the computer system that they had received a copy of my DOT Medical card. Ok, I'll take that as a partial win. I said, gee, could you please give me the fax number so I can go have that faxed? The school faxed it two weeks ago so I'm not sure what happened, and she gave me the number.

I thanked her and went to the testing office/center.

I stood in line at the door and the examiner called me in, tested my eyes, and told me which computer that my tests would be on. He told me that I had to take the general knowledge first and if I passed that, he would set up for the Ir brakes and combination tests. I breeze through all the tests. Once you have answered enough questions correctly to pass, the exam ends, so you don't necessarily have to take all of each test. The examiner recorded my scores on that card and told me to take it back to the other office where I'd paid the fees. I hand her the card and she tells me as soon as the state has my dot card she can issue my permit. She mentioned she used to be able to fax them and proceed to isdue the permit, but the state told her she couldn't do that anymore about 2 weeks ago lol.

I leave and dtive across town to the friendly UPS store where I pay them a small fee to fax my DOT card to the state transportation cabinet. I get my fax confirmation so I thank them and go out to my car and call the state transportation cabinet.

After almost an hour on automated phone hell, I reach a live person, explain the situation, and she says she's going to transfer me to the ofgfce who handles that. I talk to someone else, who asked me what time the fax was sent, what number it was sent to and what number it wss sent from. She asked me to hang on while she looked for my fax. A few minutes later she returns to the phone and tells me its all taken care of. I asked her if she meant I could go back to the dmv and get my permit? And she said yes! Yayyy. But not so fast lol.

I drive back across town to the courthouse where our dmv is located. While I'm waiting in line for the 2nd time this morning, a sheriff's deputy was at the window in front of me renewing his CDL-A. The worker saw me and told him to scoot over so she could get my business taken care of. We were all standing there joking and he warned me to NOT kick a tire to check air inflation on my pretrip. He had actually failed his first pretrip for kicking a tire ROFLMAO!

So she pulls up my information and said... "Oh there's a problem". "Have you been to New Jersey recently?" I just laughed and said I'd driven through there about 10 years ago and mentioned that something odd had come up the last time I renewed my class d, but it was obvious that I wasn't whoever they were looking for and a phone call took care of it. She told me she couldn't understand why it kept coming up in my record but it certainly wasn't me because the names weren't even similar. Apparently I have the same driver's license number in Kentucky that some wanted person from New Jersey has! Crazy stuff.

So she pulls a book out of a cabinet and proceeds to call somewhere to have something done in the "system" to allow her to issue my permit. I smile for the camera and voila! Permit in hand after only 4.5 hours of jumping through hoops.

I sure hope they catch whoever is wanted in New Jersey, because that person is really getting on my nerves. I can see it now.. level 1 inspection and being detained until they decide I'm not some hairy araibic guy from New Jersey. ;-/

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.

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.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

I-68 & I-79's Comment
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Congratulations! dancing-banana.gifdancing-dog.gif

Scott D's Comment
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Good job! Keep it up and keep us informed.good-luck.gif

Errol V.'s Comment
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Congratulations, Sue D.!! Sometimes walking your papers to each desk (even over the phone) is the best way to get the job done. Imagine the two weeks you would have waited for the wheels of bureaucracy to grind!

The Little Trucker's Comment
member avatar

Congrats Mothetrucker! Sounds like you got your cdl on your own instead of going through a company sponsored training program.

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.

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.

G-Town's Comment
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Determination prevails! Congratulations.

Susan D. 's Comment
member avatar

LittleTrucker, I'm attending a private school which was paid for by my current employer who is NOT a trucking company. We do have hundreds of trucks dropping trailers at our facilities daily. Best part is, I have no obligation to stay and work for them when I'm done in November. It's a company scholarship kind of thing. The school cost $4000 and included all my cdl fees and DOT physical. My employer paid $3800 and my obligation was for $200 and they allowed me to temporarily change my work schedule so I could attend the class 2 days/week. I guess a small part of their motive was hoping some of us would stay and take yard driver positions, but I don't know of anyone planning to stay because they just don't pay enough (less than $14/hr) for that position in this area of the country. They actually had the school come to us for the classroom portion and our drive training is done at a local community college.

They are training us in class/batches of 12 and I'm in the 2nd class. Another new class began last Friday.

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.

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.

The Little Trucker's Comment
member avatar

LittleTrucker, I'm attending a private school which was paid for by my current employer who is NOT a trucking company. We do have hundreds of trucks dropping trailers at our facilities daily. Best part is, I have no obligation to stay and work for them when I'm done in November. It's a company scholarship kind of thing. The school cost $4000 and included all my cdl fees and DOT physical. My employer paid $3800 and my obligation was for $200 and they allowed me to temporarily change my work schedule so I could attend the class 2 days/week. I guess a small part of their motive was hoping some of us would stay and take yard driver positions, but I don't know of anyone planning to stay because they just don't pay enough (less than $14/hr) for that position in this area of the country. They actually had the school come to us for the classroom portion and our drive training is done at a local community college.

They are training us in class/batches of 12 and I'm in the 2nd class. Another new class began last Friday.

Oh, wow, Sue. So you just got blessed! What company are you going to drive for or have you even decided yet?

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.

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.

Susan D. 's Comment
member avatar

I had many prehires before my classes even started as we got delayed by 2 weeks. I was seriously looking at Schneider, and have a prehire there too, however they recently lost the dedicated account with my current employer, which is what I wanted, so im opting for short haul regional carrier West Side Transport I think. Lol.. so many choices! USXpress offers a weekly home deal for my area too as does USF Holland and many more. Because I'll be leaving an 18 & 16 y/o holding down the fort here, I have to be home at least weekly even though id rather be running all over. I didn't like Roehls slip seating thing here, but certainly don't blame them. Averitt sounds good too. I've got a few good friends and a church pastor wiling to drop in at random during the week to keep an eye on things for me. If it turns into too much trouble, I will move to where I have more friends and family.

And yes, I got blessed with my school situation being paid for. Only trouble is, they don't boot out the problem students. A couple of us were all worried not wanting to get in a truck with most of our classmates (can I actually call them useless ****tards?) But we finally decided our fears are senseless since we figure they won't have their permit any time soon.. bwahaha. It's sad that so many people really struggle to get school financed and we are fortunate enough to have it laid out on a platter for us, but 3/4 of my coworkers/classmates are not very appreciative or motivated.

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.

Prehire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Prehires:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Frito's Comment
member avatar

Congrats Sue and best of luck. I second your assertion about Averitt. My experience so far with them has been very positive and I've been give a tentative orientation date (cdl road test Monday). I turned down an offer from Schneider today as quite honestly they didn't seem competitive with Averitt on multiple levels ( my personal perception/analysis). I, as I'm sure we all do, look forward to hearing about your adventures.

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.
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