Trucking School Or DMV

Topic 24475 | Page 1

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David S.'s Comment
member avatar

I grew up in a truck, a cab over Pete in fact. My grandparents were team owner operator drivers for around 40 years, and my summers were spent in those trucks. We finally graduated to a Kenworth T6 with a bunk in my early teens. I drove a beer truck with a permit in the late 90s before going to my dream job as a Police Officer. I did that for 14 years until I was hurt in the line and forced to give up that career while I recovered. I have since done so and feel 110%, but I am no longer interested in continuing my law enforcement career. My question is; should i attend a truck driving school or just try to get my license thru the DMV on my own? And with the study guide provided here of course. ;) Thank you in advance for your answers. This site is amazing and I appreciate everything y'all do for us newbies!

Owner Operator:

An owner-operator is a driver who either owns or leases the truck they are driving. A self-employed driver.

Dm:

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.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Personally I would advise, either company sponsored programs or CDL school. It certainly can be done on your own but it will more difficult.

What are your plans after you get your CDL?

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.
CK's Comment
member avatar

Hi David and welcome! Check out our welcome package, which is full of great information. We pretty much always suggest Paid CDL Training Programs over a school that you'd pay out of pocket. Be sure to check out these links:

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.
Turtle's Comment
member avatar

Welcome David!

I'm a huge proponent of Paid CDL Training Programs. Most carriers and insurance companies will require a minimum of 160hrs training, and why foot that bill yourself when there are a multitude of companies who will not only train you for free, but also pay you through training? It's a win-win.

Truck driving schools cost a ton of money, only teach you just enough to get your CDL, and you still have no guarantee of a job following completion. When you get your CDL through a training company, you have that job already lined up. Plus the company now has a vested interest in your success, and will help you achieve that success.

That's my advice anyway.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

David S.'s Comment
member avatar

I want to get on with a company at least for a little while. I have the blood for owner op, but I need to really know the nuts and bolts of the business first. I was thinking dry van or reefer for a couple of years before trying lease or purchase.

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.

Bobcat_Bob's Comment
member avatar

I too wanted to be a owner opp but after running the numbers, I decided I could make the same or more as a company driver without the huge financial risk. If you are dead set on owning or leasing definitely drive for a few years first, and do not let anyone convince you to sign up to be a lease opp before you understand the business. Many companies push the lease option before you finish school and it usually leads to disaster.

David S.'s Comment
member avatar

I have thought about the paid training, but there's a trucking school through the local community college here that is about 6 weeks long. They seem to really good and only take 6 students. I do have re-training money to cover the cost, so the 2k is not as much of a concern. I do really like the aspect of knowing there is job already there if I do the paid training. So I have a lot to think about. Thanks for the input!

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

David, here's an article I wrote that will help you see the differences:

Why I Prefer Paid CDL Training Over Private CDL Training

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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