Drop CDL A?

Topic 26763 | Page 1

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Michael B.'s Comment
member avatar

Got my cdl A 25 years ago working as a diesel mechanic/relief driver.Did this for 10 years. No schooling. Just did what I had to do. I know this does not by any means qualify me as a driver.I need proper and current training.How I put in the miles I did without incident is beyond me. One particular company with company sponsored training (my company of choice after reading about ALL of their training programs told me I cannot go through their training program because I already have a cdl.I'm not looking for a free ride here. I want their training. I need it. Again,I strongly want to drive for and only them.Would it be a wise move to "turn in" my cdl and start over?Sorry for the long post and any advice is 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.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

Mike, your situation is not unique. What company's recruiter told you you could not take the CDL course? (The company name helps a lot b/c we have drivers on here that have personal experience with many companies.)

Usually with so long from your last truck job you will be required to take the whole course again, if not a refresher. Has your CDL lapsed? By not keeping a current medical card, the CDL will be demoted to regular after a while, and you're back to square one anyway.

BTW, the things you learned 25 years ago will still "be there" when you get into a cab again. You'll be the wonder of your school classmates as you back your trailer between the cones.

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.
Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

I've head of a few companies that do this. I think some of the reason is, that some companies get Federal $$'s (or tax credits) for doing training (as well the financial obligation taken on by the driver to stay on for a contracted period in order to offset the cost).

A recruiter from Jim Palmer told me this a couple of years ago. That I would have to downgrade my Florida CDL , get a Minnesota CLP , train and road test there for a CDL-A, then transfer it back to Florida. Which made little sense to me.

Thing is - if you've held it for awhile and NEVER USE IT - sometimes it's easier to downgrade it. Nowadays, having the maintain a DOT Med Certificate, etc. (and in my case - the additional expense of the HazMat and Passenger Endorsements) - I sometimes wonder OTOH, if it's worth maintaining a 10 year old CDL that I never use. But it's a "point of pride" for me in a lot of ways. I did a 9 week full time course at a county Vo-Tech to earn it. Hate to just give it up.

If this is the profession you want to go into - and this is the company you want to go with, perhaps it's not a horrible idea to downgrade and go through the training and get a "newly minted" CDL.

Rick

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.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

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.

CLP:

Commercial Learner's Permit

Before getting their CDL, commercial drivers will receive their commercial learner's permit (CLP) upon passing the written portion of the CDL exam. They will not have to retake the written exam to get their CDL.

Michael B.'s Comment
member avatar

The company I chose was Wilson Logistics/ Jim Palmer. Has anyone else out there tried this company with this same situation?

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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