Aspiring Truck Driver With Some Questions

Topic 28639 | Page 1

Page 1 of 2 Next Page Go To Page:
Alexander T.'s Comment
member avatar

Good morning, good afternoon, good evening, whatever is appropriate for your place in the world, and welcome to my post.

My name is Alex and I am a 21 year old interested in trucking. I first considered doing trucking at the age of 17 after I met a hardworking professional truck driver through my best friend (His father is a truck driver). Since then I have always thought about a possible future in the trucking industry but did not do anything about it until now. I talked to my mother about a possible career in trucking and she was 100% onboard with the idea and is helping me in any way she can to get me started. I also told my girlfriend about this and she also supports me. My plan is to work OTR for 2-3 years and then transition to a local company and move in with my girlfriend and our pups (We have three Chihuahuas combined haha!). I have been reading the "Truck Driver's Career Guide" to familiarize myself with the industry and have also read some of the stories attached to the Guide that cover topics like pay, truck driving culture, hours of work, sight seeing, struggles rookies face, erratic sleeping schedules, how to maintain strong relationships with family & friends, etc. I am aware of the good and the bad of this job but somehow I find myself more interested as I keep reading your great stories about your adventures on the road. Anyway, question is, should I do Private CDL Training or Paid CDL Training? I understand that with paid CDL training I would most likely have to work for the company for a year which I do not mind at all for this was my plan all along. However, since I am not familiar with trucking company names and live in a small town, I have not been able to see if there are paid training programs near me (Closest big city to me is Pittsburgh which is about 1 hour away). In addition to that question, I was wondering if I need a CLP before attending the paid training program or if I could start from scratch with the company. As for private schooling, I found a school in the town I live in but they don't have much information posted on their website which makes me feel skeptical about it. Recently I have been getting ads from Roehl and Swift but I don't think either of those companies are within reasonable distance from me. I would really appreciate it if you guys could drop some names down below so that I can look into them and research them further, it would really help a lot. As of right now these are my only questions so far, if I think of another one I will try to look at the "Truck Driver's Career Guide" and if I can't an answer there I will come back to this thread and ask. Thanks for your time and help in advance.

Safe Driving,

Alex

P.S. I am not sure if this is the correct section to ask these questions and I apologize to the moderators in advance.

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.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

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.

PackRat's Comment
member avatar

High Road CDL Training ProgramPaid CDL Training Programs

Apply For Paid CDL Training

Apply For Truck Driving JobsTrucking Company Reviews

Check out these links. We always recommend company sponsored schooling programs because they have a vested interest in you succeeding, plus a guaranteed first driving job.

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.

Joseph I.'s Comment
member avatar

Distance to the company will not matter with the big national companies as they are all over and will bring you in for training. I went private school to get CDL but was in far different circumstance than you. I had a job lined up and just needed the CDL itself as I had drove semis on the farm for 30 years. You should definitely consider a company sponsored program as with that you have a job waiting when finished with school and the cost is usually nothing as long as you stay with company for a set period. These big companies go all across the nation so your actual home address does not make much difference. 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.
Dan F.'s Comment
member avatar

I went with ROEHL years ago and it is not really one year. It’s really about 15 months because your training time and your probation time don’t count (The time were they have a plan or hand pick easy loads for you for the first six weeks)

One thing I will tell you, no matter what big company you choose or if you get a small one, make sure that they pay for all your reserved parking.

Your life will be stressful for the first year or two and if you get good at doing your planning and have an idea of where you’re going to park for the night you want to have a reserve spot paid for early in the day. This will reduce your stress level greatly during your first year.

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.

JakeBreak's Comment
member avatar

I went with I went withROEHL years ago and it is not really one year. It’s really about 15 months because your training time and your probation time don’t count (The time were they have a plan or hand pick easy loads for you for the first six weeks)

One thing I will tell you, no matter what big company you choose or if you get a small one, make sure that they pay for all your reserved parking.

Your life will be stressful for the first year or two and if you get good at doing your planning and have an idea of where you’re going to park for the night you want to have a reserve spot paid for early in the day. This will reduce your stress level greatly during your first year.

Does roehl pay for reserved parking now? They didnt when i worked for them. As far as the OP it really doesn't matter where you live as long as the company operates in the area. PA is a great place because its the gateway to the northeast lol. I live about an hour north of Pittsburgh myself and there's plenty of companies that run around there. Roehl is a great place to start, as well as Schneider, Swift. Im not really sure who else has company sponsored training but this is definitely the place to start.

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.

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.

Wild-Bill's Comment
member avatar

I’d also recommend company sponsored training. Roehl is the one I went with and it’s been good so far. You’re right in the heart of our main shopping lanes so location is no problem.

As an answer to the paid parking question, we can typically get it covered if we run out of time at the shipper or cons and need to PC out.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

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.

Dan F.'s Comment
member avatar

I don’t believe they do unless you can get them to put it in writing which I have heard of at least two people that “claimed to”

double-quotes-start.png

I went with I went withROEHL years ago and it is not really one year. It’s really about 15 months because your training time and your probation time don’t count (The time were they have a plan or hand pick easy loads for you for the first six weeks)

One thing I will tell you, no matter what big company you choose or if you get a small one, make sure that they pay for all your reserved parking.

Your life will be stressful for the first year or two and if you get good at doing your planning and have an idea of where you’re going to park for the night you want to have a reserve spot paid for early in the day. This will reduce your stress level greatly during your first year.

double-quotes-end.png

Does roehl pay for reserved parking now? They didnt when i worked for them. As far as the OP it really doesn't matter where you live as long as the company operates in the area. PA is a great place because its the gateway to the northeast lol. I live about an hour north of Pittsburgh myself and there's plenty of companies that run around there. Roehl is a great place to start, as well as Schneider, Swift. Im not really sure who else has company sponsored training but this is definitely the place to start.

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.

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.

Grumpy Old Man's Comment
member avatar

Distance to the company means nothing. My company has one terminal in WI. I live in Buffalo. I go to the terminal once a quarter or so for service.

They have me bring a load out, then bring one back, so it’s just like any other driving week, with a 34 at the yard while they do routine service and I grab a safety meeting.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Truckin Along With Kearse's Comment
member avatar

Here my video that will bring up topics of local schools you may not have considered.

CDL School Truth You Need to Consider

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.
Alexander T.'s Comment
member avatar

Great responses guys, these were very insightful and helpful. Now, I got a new somewhat dumb question. So, I have a trip planned at the end of November to visit family out of town and was wondering if I should wait until after the trip to apply for the paid CDL program or if I could apply now and notify them in advance of the trip?

Thanks,

Alex

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.
Page 1 of 2 Next Page Go To Page:

New Reply:

New! Check out our help videos for a better understanding of our forum features

Bold
Italic
Underline
Quote
Photo
Link
Smiley
Links On TruckingTruth


example: TruckingTruth Homepage



example: https://www.truckingtruth.com
Submit
Cancel
Upload New Photo
Please enter a caption of one sentence or less:

Click on any of the buttons below to insert a link to that section of TruckingTruth:

Getting Started In Trucking High Road Training Program Company-Sponsored Training Programs Apply For Company-Sponsored Training Truck Driver's Career Guide Choosing A School Choosing A Company Truck Driving Schools Truck Driving Jobs Apply For Truck Driving Jobs DOT Physical Drug Testing Items To Pack Pre-Hire Letters CDL Practice Tests Trucking Company Reviews Brett's Book Leasing A Truck Pre-Trip Inspection Learn The Logbook Rules Sleep Apnea
Done
Done

0 characters so far - 5,500 maximum allowed.
Submit Preview

Preview:

Submit
Cancel

Join Us!

We have an awesome set of tools that will help you understand the trucking industry and prepare for a great start to your trucking career. Not only that, but everything we offer here at TruckingTruth is 100% free - no strings attached! Sign up now and get instant access to our member's section:
High Road Training Program Logo
  • The High Road Training Program
  • The High Road Article Series
  • The Friendliest Trucker's Forum Ever!
  • Email Updates When New Articles Are Posted

Apply For Paid CDL Training Through TruckingTruth

Did you know you can fill out one quick form here on TruckingTruth and apply to several companies at once for paid CDL training? Seriously! The application only takes one minute. You will speak with recruiters today. There is no obligation whatsoever. Learn more and apply here:

Apply For Paid CDL Training

About Us

TruckingTruth was founded by Brett Aquila (that's me!), a 15 year truck driving veteran, in January 2007. After 15 years on the road I wanted to help people understand the trucking industry and everything that came with the career and lifestyle of an over the road trucker. We'll help you make the right choices and prepare for a great start to your trucking career.

Read More

Becoming A Truck Driver

Becoming A Truck Driver is a dream we've all pondered at some point in our lives. We've all wondered if the adventure and challenges of life on the open road would suit us better than the ordinary day to day lives we've always known. At TruckingTruth we'll help you decide if trucking is right for you and help you get your career off to a great start.

Learn More