Brand New CDL - Advice Needed

Topic 16618 | Page 1

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Mark L.'s Comment
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I am 60 years old out of the oil & gas market. I just got my CDL from a private school (Lone Star College). I added the Hazmat , Doubles/Trips, Tanker Endorsements with a TWIC and Passport. I'm in Smithville TX, being courted by Schnieder, CRST, Knight, Melton, Swift and more. I need advice, dont want to start off with the wrong company. I want to gain as much experience and learn as fast as possible.

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.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

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.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Welcome Mark.

In the upper left hand corner of othis site, there is a search bar. In addition to reviewing this link: Trucking Company Reviews, and type in one of the companies you mentioned above, press enter and it will return a whole lot of information.

Of all the companies you listed, keep in mind that CRST is a teaming company and does not run a solo operation.

Other than that foot note, all good companies, we have contributing drivers on this forum from each one of them.

Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

Mark, re-read what G-Town wrote:

Of all the companies you listed, keep in mind that CRST is a teaming company and does not run a solo operation.

Other than that foot note, all good companies, we have contributing drivers on this forum from each one of them

Some companies push team driving (look it up for definition & comments), which is a special deal on its own. It's important to choose your driving partner with more care than picking a date from Match.com. You two will be living for days on end inside a room as big as walk in closet.

And all the large companies are "good" - they all really want to keep their drivers from leaving them. For any company you may consider, check them out in the Trucking Company Reviews.

You may also want to check

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Sambo's Comment
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Go knight! Go knight!

smile.gif

Really...I'm NOT biased at all....

Texaslady0804's Comment
member avatar

I'm new with my CDL also. Almost the same age as well. I started to go team with my husband. He is my trainer. We checked out many companies and picked Werner. Let him train me so we aren't split up. Make a list of what you want in a company and write down the answers by company you talk to. If you don't you will get mixed up who said what exactly. So many are very close but one may have just a little edge once you know what you are looking for. We had it narrowed to 2 or 3 but Werner had a policy that we just really liked over the others. List out home time, pet policy, benefits, average miles per week, pay per mile to start and after you finish training. Whatever else is important to you. When you get through and pick a company, get an employment offer letter that spells out all of it so later they can't say it doesn't apply or incorrect note taking on your part. Good luck and be safe out there.

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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