Looking Into Schools In Texas, Hope To Start In January 2019

Topic 24069 | Page 1

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Gar H.'s Comment
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My wife have been discussing changing careers for a while with “ truck driver “ as our most likely option to do together. We have taken a year off from work and traveled the western states, spending lots of time in Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas. We like to see the country and are looking forward to 10 more years of work before simi-retirement. She is 5’2” and worrying about the ergonomics of the simi’s seat. Our F250 is a 6 speed but to completely push the clutch in she has to scoot forward a little bit. Tiring in stop and go traffic. Other than that, she worries about the real small living space in the truck while on the road. Right now KLLM, Millis, & Swift are at the top of our list but several others are in consideration. I hope to get more input on different companies before we commit to one. Merry Christmas to you all and hopefully you can give us more things to think about.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Welcome to the forum. And Season’s Greetings to you as well.

Let your wife know that there is a driver on the Walmart Dedicated account I am assigned to who is 5’ 0”. She is a Million Miler and does just fine.

Take a good, long look at these links:

Paid CDL Training Programs

Good luck, and stop back once you had a chance to review all of that material.

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.
Gar H.'s Comment
member avatar

I have read the book cover to cover(online) and we have been trying to educate ourselves on the different schools. So far Texas looks like where we would like to relocate to, So a school and company located there would be what we think we want. We want to team drive so a company that values teams is a must. She wants to be sure we can drive together or this is a no-go plan. She is also worrying about passing the school,..but she did great in her schooling as a bookkeeper. Anyone go to any of the Texas schools lately? Any must avoid schools? Thank You for your time and Merry Christmas Garwin &Val

Brent R.'s Comment
member avatar

I went to Amarillo College Truck Driving Academy, it’s 8 weeks, they are an approved CDL testing location for DPS, that means you take your state driving test with them, I graduated December 12th and started with a company the 17th and in training now, it worked well 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.
Doug C.'s Comment
member avatar

Millis is a really good company, but they don't do team driving. When you finish school and training you will go out solo.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Any reason why you are not considering a Paid CDL Training Programs ?

For the most part it doesn’t matter if you live close to a school or a particular company. As long as the company hires from your area, where you live is of little importance. Don’t limit yourself to just Texas.

Trucking Company Reviews

Good luck.

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.
Gar H.'s Comment
member avatar

Paid CDL school training program is plan “A”,.. we figure you pass and your hired. As for Texas, it’s where we want to live and we like the state Tax structure. ( no payroll Tax ) Some of the Texas schools seem to state that we must be Texas residents so we will need to switch from Rainy Oregon. We both like warmer weather. As we want to move to Texas and it seems that wherever you go to school you need an in-state license for CDL training, we figure on schooling there. We are open to other ideas which is why we are asking lots of questions and reading suggested material. G-Town,..are you saying that we can go to school and work for an out-of-state company and still relocate to Texas? That would broaden our search and possibilities. Bretts book was good and I read it in 2 days ( while getting ready for Christmas too),..I will look into the link you just posted too. Thank 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.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Gar asked?

G-Town,..are you saying that we can go to school and work for an out-of-state company and still relocate to Texas?

Yes. Old School works for Knight Transportation based in Phoenix AZ; he lives in Texas.

I work for Swift on a Dedicated Walmart account serving stores in the North East region. Swift is also based in Phoenix AZ, I live in PA. I went to a Swift Academy school in Richmond VA.

Many, many more examples. Don’t give it a second thought, a non-issue.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Just to confirm what G-Town is saying. I've worked for two large trucking companies, and both of them were headquartered several states away. The only consideration you must consider is a company's hiring area. They will have no problem getting you home if you live in their hiring area. As a flat bed driver for Knight, they have a considerable amount of customers we deliver to in Texas. When I'm ready to go home I'll tell my dispatcher , "Hey, can you assign me a load to Texas? I'd like to go visit my family for a few days." They get that done easily.

Most of these companies show their "hiring area" on their website.

Dispatcher:

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.
Gar H.'s Comment
member avatar

A friend of my wife has talked to her about the dispatches for loads often don’t get you home when you want. He said once you get company paid training, they hold the cost of schooling over your head and run you ragged. He said a lot of new truckers quit because of the total lack of dispatch getting them home when they want/need home time. They have too many loads needing moved and don’t care where you want to go. If you get tired of that and quit,..you have to pay the company back for the school. She is very worried about being ran ragged and forced dispatch. And the cost of training held over her head. Some of the schools have a Pro-rate on the school cost so I think we will be okay. Also as we would have to be “out of pocket “ up front with private schools. Then with private schooling, it’s getting a pre-hire agreement or job hunting after we are done. How does it work as far as the school and company being a different state from our resident? In Texas you have 90 days to get a Texas license once you move there. If we go to Swift or Knights school in Arizona don’t we end up with a Arizona license and once we move to Texas we have to take the CDL test all over? Training in Sunny Arizona during the winter sounds great. We like warm weather. Also with a home in Oregon too ( her son lives at home ) we would like to be able to drop by there for a few days a month. She has thought about it a lot and would like to get a “home at night” or “home every other night “job after building up the experience needed, 1-2 years it sounds like. As it is getting close to the new year, we are feeling the need to figure this out soon. I am a lot more comfortable with changing situations then she is. She would like a rock solid plan for the road ahead, I am okay with winging it (Pilots LOL) Old School, you stated that your dispatch can get you home when you want. How often are you turned down on that? Would you recommend Knight as a place to start and a good school? Wow there’s a lot to learn about this industry, and so many options and opportunities.

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.

Pre-hire:

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.

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