Is It Possible To Just Jump Into A Truck And Learn Enough To Get A CDL Without School?

Topic 23629 | Page 4

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G-Town's Comment
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Vincent you have the makings of a plan. See it through. Lots of current and former Pumpkin Pilots on the forum. I’m sure members like Steve will step up and help you out.

Just a word of caution on the tanker. Best if you gain some experience driving dry van or reefer before committing to tanker. The liquid moving around in the tank while you are driving; changing lanes, accelerating, cornering and above all else stopping creates unique challenges that some prior driving experience will enable you to operate safer, with less risk. Think of a wave tank...that’s what you will be driving.

Good luck.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

G-Town's Comment
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Vincent one final thought for for you...

Use the search bar to find @Schneider Stories” in the diary section. It will give you a good preview of what to expect.

Brent R.'s Comment
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The school I start next week is 336 total hours, total of 8 weeks at Amarillo College Truck Driving Academy.

Vincent S.'s Comment
member avatar

Alright so I just contacted a Schneider recruiter. They said I would qualify for most of their positions with just a class A CDL and no experience....I was a little shocked at first, but I asked a second time and he said I'd definitely qualify. I'd just need to complete their skills test and then attend their normal training program that they require from any graduate of an accredited school.

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.
Don's Comment
member avatar

I wouldn't see an issue with paying your own way at a CDL school. Many go that route on a daily basis. With a company paid program, you have a job waiting when you get your cdl. I went with CFI through their company sponsored program, and the train was excellent and at a lower cost than most (if not all) private schools in Ohio. I left CFI after a couple months and am driving locally. I just had to pay my remaining tuition costs. A win-win for me.

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 and's Comment
member avatar

Great news about Schneider. To help with your realistic fears of jumping ship. I highly suggest Brett's Book, Becoming A Truck Driver: The Raw Truth About Truck Driving as well as reading through plenty of our Training Diaries . Schneider has dry van , tanker, intermodal and local driving options for you. If you are comfortable learning to manage your clock to be early to all your appointments, you can pretty much make your own work schedule out here. There is no set work schedule out here. We have to be positive, assertive, kind and proactive to be successful out here. This career is not for people who need their hand held in everything they do. This is a career for self starters. Best of luck to you.

Intermodal:

Transporting freight using two or more transportation modes. An example would be freight that is moved by truck from the shipper's dock to the rail yard, then placed on a train to the next rail yard, and finally returned to a truck for delivery to the receiving customer.

In trucking when you hear someone refer to an intermodal job they're normally talking about hauling shipping containers to and from the shipyards and railyards.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Alright so I just contacted a Schneider recruiter. They said I would qualify for most of their positions with just a class A CDL and no experience....I was a little shocked at first, but I asked a second time and he said I'd definitely qualify. I'd just need to complete their skills test and then attend their normal training program that they require from any graduate of an accredited school.

Be careful here. You will not convince me they are okay with a CDL that has no formal training behind it. Even if they do, I don’t recommend this approach for the simple reason if it doesn’t work out with Schneider and your employment ends early, you will basically need to start over. I’ll defer to other Schneider drivers.

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.
Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

Props for you, Vincent. Reading the several contributions here and understanding what we are all telling you is a rare thing. As I hinted with that rolling eyes remark, many posters don't get the answers that support their own set conclusions and just move on. Thank you for "listening"!

Your fear of stepping out on a new adventure/ career is right on. In CDL school I've met many students who eat ramen noodles every day and tell me trucking is their last chance. It takes the ol' Ducks In A Row planning and guts to move in a new direction.

Don't worry about those "What if"s. Learn what it is your getting into (Becoming A Truck Driver: The Raw Truth About Truck Driving). Decide if you're going to make a go of it, and sign the papers that get you into a Paid CDL Training Program. Then post your training diary for us!

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

double-quotes-start.png

Alright so I just contacted a Schneider recruiter. They said I would qualify for most of their positions with just a class A CDL and no experience....I was a little shocked at first, but I asked a second time and he said I'd definitely qualify. I'd just need to complete their skills test and then attend their normal training program that they require from any graduate of an accredited school.

double-quotes-end.png

Be careful here. You will not convince me they are okay with a CDL that has no formal training behind it. Even if they do, I don’t recommend this approach for the simple reason if it doesn’t work out with Schneider and your employment ends early, you will basically need to start over. I’ll defer to other Schneider drivers.

0767330001539634335.jpg0085465001539633980.jpg

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.
Vincent S.'s Comment
member avatar

I did go on to ask him specifically if I would qualify for training to drive a tanker, but he hasn't responded. I assume "we would send you through our hiring process just like any other candidate" means that it's a possibility.

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