CDL School - Kansas City Area - JCCC

Topic 24654 | Page 1

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Travis M.'s Comment
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Monday Feb 18, 2019 Hey everyone. I started at a CDL school here in the Kansas City area and wanted to share my experiences. I don't see any other posts related to this school and it does seem to use a different approach than others so maybe this will be of some interest.

They have a dedicated class structure but I'm taking the part time version while I work full time. This class meets for 6 to 8 weeks, two week night evenings for classroom and two half weekend days for driving. E.g. Tuesday and Thursday evening from 6:00 to 8:30 and then a half day both Saturday and Sunday. It uses the JJ Keller text for reference.

I'm not impressed by the depth of information in that book but it does provide some structure for the class. There is also online JJ Keller lessons that get assigned which have quizzes we have to pass. The online lessons are pretty good with animations, videos, pictures, e.t.c.

The CDL permit (with combo and air brakes) is a prereq as is a DOT physical, drug test and a background check. That helps the level of dedication of the people that show up. They've already committed time and money to get there and they should be employable.

We're starting week three but we're behind because of snow and ice storms. We have missed one class and one weekend day.

So far, the classes are reviewing the CDL material, pretrip and general techniques. Great discussions with the instructor. All the information available here is certainly a big help in getting ahead of the class.

Plus, we have had two recruiters visit to give us their pitch. A local flatbed company and Swift (Edwardsville).

Since we missed a class, that's only three class sessions so far plus the online lessons. The first weekend session was hands on pretrip. The other two (half days) have been backing with two students per truck per instructor.

Straight line, no problem. I seem to be equally bad in both directions for offset and parallel. I can get it in but it takes extra pullups. I've never been in a truck before but I feel OK after just two sessions. Tried the 90 yesterday for the first time. Did OK on my first attempt and then it fell apart. On my last attempt, I just pulled way up outside the boundary just to get it in the box to have some closure for the day.

I've got pretrip pretty well down and I'm comfortable with test situations. We'll start mock tests in the next week or so. They want to see good progress on backing and solid pretrip before we go out on the road. Target is usually week 4. They'll pair up people of similar skills. Some guys (all guys) in the class have driven before. Some are nervous and lost. My goal is to not be the last one on the road 😁

Safe travels... Travis

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.

Travis M.'s Comment
member avatar

Friday March 15th A little late on the update... The class has been a lot of fun.

Because we had missed a few weekend days due to snow and ice, they set up special sessions for a few of us. Last week, I had both Tuesday and Thursday afternoon one on one with a truck and an instructor.

Tuesday was 3 hours of practice and Thursday was a mock test. Went through a full pretrip, all the backing maneuvers and a road test.

Mock test went well and they scheduled the real test for this past Monday.

Had more one on one time last weekend.

Passed the test on Monday.

CDL-A in hand.

We've had recruiters at almost every class. Schneider. JB Hunt. Dot Foods. Crete. And others.

It's interesting to hear how each one thinks their system and compensation is better than everyone else.

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.

Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

dancing-banana.gifdancing-banana.gifdancing-banana.gifdancing-banana.gif way to go! where are you thinking about starting your career?

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