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Topic 25229 | Page 1

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DJames's Comment
member avatar

Hey everybody,

I am new to the board and am not yet a trucker, not yet in CDL school either. I am 45 and have been working in the IT industry for the past 20+ years. I am pretty much burnt out and looking for something different to do. I have done some research and was looking to get some opinions on CDL Schools and training programs. One that has consistently come to my attention is Prime, though they have their detractors the overall appears to be pretty favorable. Any advice, opinions, etc. would be appreciated.

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.
Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

Welcome! We have many prime drivers here that will be along later to give better info prime specific. However, you cant go wrong with any of the major carriers.

Splitter's Comment
member avatar

Not much info to go on. It all depends on your needs & overall comfort zone. What division would you want to start in? What's your hometime needs? Do you want to all 48 states or something regional?

In general, like Rob said, you can't go wrong with any of majors. Detractors will find something wrong for every solution. Instead focus on fixing your attitude & perseverance to handle the myriad obstacles that can & will come up.

This site has sections with reviews, trainee diaries, articles galore on a vast variety of subjects & lots of random questions in this section. But to get started, someone will be along shortly with the proper links to Brett's book on the industry, the High Road Training program, Daniel B.'s pretrip pdf & other helpful links.

I don't understand why folks would want to pay for CDL schools when lots of companies will pay you while you train & you have a guaranteed position if you fulfill all your requirements.

If you have any specific questions just ask.

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.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

Turtle's Comment
member avatar

Welcome DJames, there are definitely many of us Primates here willing to help out. You can also try entering a Prime topic in the search bar above. There you will get a wealth of information.

Whichever company you ultimately choose, I highly recommend Paid CDL Training Programs vs a trucking school.

Come at us wIth any specific questions you have, check out these links in the meantime:

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.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Bruce K.'s Comment
member avatar

Welcome, Djames. I started my path in trucking after a first career. This site and the experienced drivers guided me every step of the way. You will find abundant information here that will let you make sound choices.

I love my new career and like was said previously, any of the majors will make a good driver out of you if you put in the effort. Good luck!

DJames's Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the info guys. Splitter, I was looking to go OTR in flatbed or tanker, I would be fine with all 48 states for the first couple of years and maybe got to something regional from there. I'm not married, have no kids, and don't own a home.....home-time needs are very flexible.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Splitter's Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the info guys. Splitter, I was looking to go OTR in flatbed or tanker, I would be fine with all 48 states for the first couple of years and maybe got to something regional from there. I'm not married, have no kids, and don't own a home.....home-time needs are very flexible.

Of those two options? I'd definitely go flatbed. Tanker surge is no joke. Even carrying liquids in totes in my reefer I can feel it, I couldn't imagine dealing with that every day with the knucklehead moves these 4 wheelers pull on us out here.

There's a bunch of skateboarders here. Turtle is one of them. Read up on those links he posted & then read some of the diaries from other rookies that went that route & see if you still have the interest. Again, any questions, doubts or concerns? Don't hesitate to put out here so that we can help you figure things out.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

...and Old School is also a flatbed driver. None better at clock utilization and working his stops.

DJames's Comment
member avatar

Well, I gave Prime a call but unfortunately they are not hiring out of Florida at this time. I guess I will be looking around.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Lots of other options. Use these two links to assist further:

Paid CDL Training Programs

Apply For Paid 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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