Roehl Get Your CDL Program

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Hawk's Comment
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I had meant to keep a diary of my training while I was going thru the Get your CDL program at Roehl but time got away from me these last four weeks! So, instead,I will give you all the highlight real of my experience along with a few feelings.

A few notes about the program that are not notes in the review of the school on trucking mg truth:

This is a four week program and you are an employee from day one. You are paid $500 a week while you train to take your cdl skills. A hotel room is provided (shared with another student) and the hotel provides breakfast in the morning. Roehl provider lunch for you and a voucher for dinner at the hotel restaurant if you are in Marshfield (not sure about other locations). You are responsible for travel to and from the terminal each day and class runs m - f from 7 am to 5 pm and on Sat from 7 am to 11:30 am. You must come with your state's cdl permit and a d.o.t. physical that they pay for.

Week 1: You start out by filling out paperwork and taking a physical fitness test on Monday. Then they take a few students to the simulator to learn how to shift including the art of double clutching. The next day the students that didn't get into the simulator go while the one's that already had gone join an instructor out on the track bobtailing around in the truck. Day three is spent hooked up to a trailer and on the simulator learning how to turn. By day four you are out on county roads driving with an instructor! Day five builds on the previous day. Day six is spent in the classroom learning. ( This is very intense and I never thought I would be on the road with actual traffic the first week!)

Week two: You start city driving and learning the pre-trip. Each day builds on the last. They teach you company policies and you start to learn how to back the truck. The right hand and left hand turns get harder as you improve on your skills. The pre-trip becomes your responsibility so start arriving at 6:45! ( Again WOW! So much to learn! Hard to believe that we will be taking our CDL pre-test next week)

Week three: Monday and Tuesday are pretty much the same as week two. Wednesday is cdl pre-test day in the morning. You will only do your In-cab test, air brakes and the driving portion of the test, no pre-trip or backing portion. The afternoon is filled with backing. By Thursday and Friday you work on where you need improvement and the instructors start backing off on the coaching. (Week three goes by quick and you start to feel more confidant about your skills. You also receive your first paycheck so budget accordingly if you quit a job to come to work at Roehl)

Week 4: Monday and Tuesday you are on your own so to speak. The instructors are still in the passenger seat and will stop you if you are unsafe but by now you need to know your stuff. Wednesday is CDL test day! When you are not testing you are shown videos about safe driving and quizzed on them. (I passed!) The one's that pass are given their fuel cards and set up their company voicemail. Thursday you receive your certificate of completion, a class picture is taken and you learn how to do a 45 degree back! The van driver's meet their fleet manager and go home after lunch while the flatbed driver's start cargo training. Friday morning is spent in the classroom learning more cargo training, you meet your fleet manager and Friday afternoon is spent outside doing hands on work. No Sat class during week four so you get to home after Friday! (Test day was nerve wracking and the hardest test I have ever taken.)

This is very intense program and probably the hardest thing I have ever done, it's a long month but goes by quick. Study at night and learn the pre-trip, ask questions and be open to constructive criticism. Everyone there wants you to succeed and every company driver and instructor is happy to have you as part of the team! Safety is number one and is a cornerstone value!

I know this was a long post but if you are considering Roehl then I can't think of a better company to join, I have felt valued from day one and I feel like I made the best choice for stating my new career!

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.

Bobtail:

"Bobtailing" means you are driving a tractor without a trailer attached.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Double Clutch:

To engage and then disengage the clutch twice for every gear change.

When double clutching you will push in the clutch, take the gearshift out of gear, release the clutch, press the clutch in again, shift the gearshift into the next gear, then release the clutch.

This is done on standard transmissions which do not have synchronizers in them, like those found in almost all Class A trucks.

Double Clutching:

To engage and then disengage the clutch twice for every gear change.

When double clutching you will push in the clutch, take the gearshift out of gear, release the clutch, press the clutch in again, shift the gearshift into the next gear, then release the clutch.

This is done on standard transmissions which do not have synchronizers in them, like those found in almost all Class A trucks.

Fleet Manager:

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.
MindFreak's Comment
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A quick question..since I live in Arkansas, would I test there or in my home state?

Hawk's Comment
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You take your permit test in your home state and skills test in the state that you go to school in. It takes about 3-5 business days for your home state to receive your skills test results. Hope that helps!

MindFreak's Comment
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It helped a lot! Thank you!

MindFreak's Comment
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Hawk...if you do Facebook..look me up and friend request me....Teddie Allen

Brett Aquila's Comment
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That was an excellent rundown Hawk. Thanks for that!

I just want to remind people that our High Road Training Program is designed to help people study for their CDL permit, their CDL endorsements, and has several modules for flatbedders and for things you must know to do your job out on the road like Logbook Rules, loading cargo, and weight distribution.

Here is how our program breaks down:

To Get Your CDL Permit:

  • Rules & Regulations
  • Driving Safely
  • Transporting Cargo Safely
  • Air Brakes
  • Combination Vehicles
  • Pre-Trip Inspection
  • Driving Exam

To get your CDL endorsements which are optional but highly recommend:

  • Transporting Passengers
  • Doubles And Triples
  • Tankers
  • Hazardous Materials

Two sections we've built ourselves with info you'll need for everyday life on the road:

  • Logbook
  • Weight & Balance

Two sections for anyone considering flatbed:

  • Cargo Securement
  • New York State Coil Endorsement

High Road Training Program

Pre-trip Inspection:

A pre-trip inspection is a thorough inspection of the truck completed before driving for the first time each day.

Federal and state laws require that drivers inspect their vehicles. Federal and state inspectors also may inspect your vehicles. If they judge a vehicle to be unsafe, they will put it “out of service” until it is repaired.

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.

Combination Vehicle:

A vehicle with two separate parts - the power unit (tractor) and the trailer. Tractor-trailers are considered combination vehicles.

Doubles:

Refers to pulling two trailers at the same time, otherwise known as "pups" or "pup trailers" because they're only about 28 feet long. However there are some states that allow doubles that are each 48 feet in length.

Lone Gunman's Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the info, I've been considering going this Route to get my CDL One question, what happens if your a bit slower to catch on ? Will they work with you a little longer, or are you more likely to be " let go"

Thanks in advance

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.
Big Scott (CFI Driver/Tra's Comment
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Thanks for the current info.

Hawk's Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the info, I've been considering going this Route to get my CDL One question, what happens if your a bit slower to catch on ? Will they work with you a little longer, or are you more likely to be " let go"

Thanks in advance

It depends, most catch on, and they give you goals for the end of each week. We had a few struggle and they worked with them. If you fail the skills test, they work with you and hold you over until you can retest.

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.
Lone Gunman's Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

Thanks for the info, I've been considering going this Route to get my CDL One question, what happens if your a bit slower to catch on ? Will they work with you a little longer, or are you more likely to be " let go"

Thanks in advance

double-quotes-end.png

It depends, most catch on, and they give you goals for the end of each week. We had a few struggle and they worked with them. If you fail the skills test, they work with you and hold you over until you can retest.

Ah man, Thanks for the reply ! I was hoping that was the answer, I'm debating going to a school, or roehl's 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.
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