It's Starting To Get Real

Topic 22579 | Page 1

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JT's Comment
member avatar

Well after several months of exhaustive research and deciding that paid CDL training was the option for me I am now enrolled in a private CDL school. Class starts next Tuesday. I'm excited and nervous. I feel I will have a leg up just from studying the resources on this site. The reason I changed my mind about a school is I'm currently unemployed and collecting unemployment (first time in my 40+ years of working I've had to do that). I don't like it one bit. Anyway the school is a mile and a half from my house and I qualified for a grant through the state that pays all but $250 of the tuition. Got enrolled yesterday and paid the 250. Today I go for my drug screen and DOT physical. Once those are done then it will be official. Next will be deciding what direction to go in. This site has been so helpful. I only hope I come across people even half as knowledgeable and helpful as those on here when I get started with this. I will keep updates coming as I can when class starts.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Bran009's Comment
member avatar

Good luck!

Old School's Comment
member avatar

JT, I'm glad to see you've got the ball rolling! Bear with my little word of caution. You say you've done "exhaustive research," yet you've chosen a path that has you putting little to no "skin in the game." This career choice demands a high level of Commitment.

So far you're out 250 dollars and probably more research time than necessary. My warning is that at some point you've got to set a steel hard resolve inside yourself to make this happen. Since you don't have a lot to lose here, you're less likely to get to that point.

I'm in no way trying to criticize your approach. It's just an observation that I think you should think about. I want to meet you out here one day, but I can't get that opportunity if you don't break through the barriers that hinder so many new entry level drivers.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Dorothy M.'s Comment
member avatar

The best of luck. I did something similar last year when I was let go from my job. I got a grant also ; not as much as you did, but it helped big time. Well done.

Well after several months of exhaustive research and deciding that paid CDL training was the option for me I am now enrolled in a private CDL school. Class starts next Tuesday. I'm excited and nervous. I feel I will have a leg up just from studying the resources on this site. The reason I changed my mind about a school is I'm currently unemployed and collecting unemployment (first time in my 40+ years of working I've had to do that). I don't like it one bit. Anyway the school is a mile and a half from my house and I qualified for a grant through the state that pays all but $250 of the tuition. Got enrolled yesterday and paid the 250. Today I go for my drug screen and DOT physical. Once those are done then it will be official. Next will be deciding what direction to go in. This site has been so helpful. I only hope I come across people even half as knowledgeable and helpful as those on here when I get started with this. I will keep updates coming as I can when class starts.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
JT's Comment
member avatar

JT, I'm glad to see you've got the ball rolling! Bear with my little word of caution. You say you've done "exhaustive research," yet you've chosen a path that has you putting little to no "skin in the game." This career choice demands a high level of Commitment.

So far you're out 250 dollars and probably more research time than necessary. My warning is that at some point you've got to set a steel hard resolve inside yourself to make this happen. Since you don't have a lot to lose here, you're less likely to get to that point.

I'm in no way trying to criticize your approach. It's just an observation that I think you should think about. I want to meet you out here one day, but I can't get that opportunity if you don't break through the barriers that hinder so many new entry level drivers.

Old School, I don't consider your advice critical at all. I see your point. The only reason I haven't done anything sooner is I had a family commitment last week that couldn't be put off so as a result I knew it would be the end of May before I could go full on with this. As for having "no skin in the game" I had already applied to the school and was fully prepared to pay full tuition by financing it through the school when the lady at the school recommended I try to go through the unemployment office about a grant that is offered to certain unemployed individuals. I went and talked to them and was approved for the grant. As for not having much to lose I've been out of work for nearly three months so this has to work out because I need to go to work soon. So I think I have quite a bit to lose if I don't commit myself to this. I am in my mid 50's and I'm old school when it comes to work and holding down a job. I've been working since I was 15 years old and this unemployment business is for the birds. I hope to meet you one day as well. Thanks for your input.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Susan D. 's Comment
member avatar

I went the private school route also, because I got a scholarship that paid for all of the $4,000 tuition, but $160. Had it have come out of my pocket I would have RAN to the most appropriate company sponsored school for me.

I still had 2 teens at home, so I worked full time and attended CDL school part time on weekends. I DO NOT RECOMMEND anyone doing this the way I did. It was too much and I was so exhausted and stressed. It was a nightmare. Lol. But I was determined and wasn't going to give up. My backing was HORRENDOUS lol.

Today, I've been driving for almost 2-1/2 years, training new drivers for about 1-1/2 years, and love every minute. Today I actually managed to snag some extra time on a load and took my trainee to the beach. She'd never seen an ocean before so she was very excited.. Her first time seeing the South Atlantic. Cool stuff.

Anyway, enjoy your school, be able to laugh at yourself, and remember not to oversteer during backing (turn the wheel too hard, too much).

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.
JT's Comment
member avatar

I went the private school route also, because I got a scholarship that paid for all of the $4,000 tuition, but $160. Had it have come out of my pocket I would have RAN to the most appropriate company sponsored school for me.

I still had 2 teens at home, so I worked full time and attended CDL school part time on weekends. I DO NOT RECOMMEND anyone doing this the way I did. It was too much and I was so exhausted and stressed. It was a nightmare. Lol. But I was determined and wasn't going to give up. My backing was HORRENDOUS lol.

Today, I've been driving for almost 2-1/2 years, training new drivers for about 1-1/2 years, and love every minute. Today I actually managed to snag some extra time on a load and took my trainee to the beach. She'd never seen an ocean before so she was very excited.. Her first time seeing the South Atlantic. Cool stuff.

Anyway, enjoy your school, be able to laugh at yourself, and remember not to oversteer during backing (turn the wheel too hard, too much).

Thanks Susan. I initially wanted to go the company sponsored school route but circumstances changed that. Since the school is only a mile and an half from my house I decided it was the best option for me then the icing on the cake was when they told me to check in to the grant thing even though I was prepared to pay for it anyway that just topped it all off. I passed my DOT physical yesterday and took my drug screen. I'm excited. I'm with you on the backing. That's the biggest thing I'm nervous about but I know most struggle with that so I know I won't be alone. You are to be commended for your dedication with children at home, having to work and go to school. I salute you.

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.

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