Friend Not Liking Paid Training/Question

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Eric's Comment
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So I got my learner's CDL taking some time to compare paid training vs regular trucking school. My friend is super upset, doing well at large company paid training, getting lots of positive feedback from instructors. Then she doesn't take a right turn wide enough and rides a curb for a second. No damage to anything. Then her classmate has to floor the brakes for a couple seconds, didn't hit anything. This was during real world street training. So she finds out because of this, her and her classmate are under review to stay or get sent home. One error in the hours they've already put in. The instructors are not happy but say there's nothing they can do it's a corporate decision. Also she found out that if you fail the big test, the company may or may not allow you to even re-test. If she goes home she's doing a traditional school. No way I'm even gonna consider paid training with a company after hearing that.

So here's a couple questions:

1. The school near me is well regarded has solid reviews. They charge an additional 1500.00 to learn manual because it sounds like they believe we are headed to all automatic anyways. Should she/and I insist on manual? or just do automatic?

2. I'm curious about safety. What do you do if you have to spend the night in your truck in a ghetto somewhere? or even being in those areas? I assume you can't conceal carry right? just curious how truckers keep safe?

Thank You


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.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Truckin Along With Kearse's Comment
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Hi. I don't know about other companies but I can tell you there is no way in heck she is at Prime. If she is you can have her email me and I can look into this as a member of Prime's Driver Advisory Board. They expect you to have accidents... I scraped a trailer with my permit.... Failed the backing and then the road test by impeding traffic and stalling in a manual. We are given Multiple times to pass each section of the exam. When I went solo I knocked an axle off a trailer. Most companies give 3 strikes meaning accident, tickets or other infractions so this story is totally bizarre if true.

Consider this.... Go to local school and fail....many charge you extra.. My local school is $500 extra.

I would love to know this company... Because usually there is a lot more to the story. And i would hate for you to spend thousands of dollars only to be told that you have something on your record or DOT issue that would prevent getting hired. We see that all the time. Many of us went through company sponsored programs which is why we support them.


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
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With paid training it often comes down to how confident they are about the student. You must show progress to continue on. Also, they don't want excuses or to downplay the severity. In the state exam just touching the curb is an automatic fail. Needing to hard brake is most frequently caused by following too closely or not looking far enough ahead. This is not the case in every instance, I recall a hard brake due to underestimating how touchy they are bobtailing. Most instructors do it because they enjoy teaching. They definitely don't do it for the money they can make much more doing local work without the stress of new students every couple weeks and putting their life in inexperienced hands. I'm going to guess that your friend is going through Roehl. I've seen it mentioned a couple times here that you may be sent home if you fail your first attempt. If you tell us the company name we can better assist you. Most of the large carriers that have paid training have people familiar with the way they're run whether its current or former drivers.


"Bobtailing" means you are driving a tractor without a trailer attached.


Operating While Intoxicated

Liz D.'s Comment
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They have to be looking at more than that. At prime I had to take the road test three times. I missed a stop sign the first time and I curbed it the second. I got a serious talking to after my second attempt but I believe they would have given me a fourth try. Third time was a charm, maybe they saw how determined I was. I don’t know but if they don’t seem confident or are scared that could be factor. It’s serious business being out there on the road you have to be safe and secure with your driving skills.

Pete B.'s Comment
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Re: your other questions, learn the manual; you never know when you’ll need it. Which ever company you end up driving for, may start you out in an automatic, but that truck may end up in the shop, and it’s possible you might be given a manual as a loaner. If you have zero experience with a manual, then you may end up sitting, making zero dollars, while your automatic is in the shop. That scenario is not far-fetched.

About safety… If the concern is causing you great anxiety, then get some pepper spray and stick it under your pillow, or near your bunk. I’ve parked in some sketchy-looking areas, but none so much that I was worried about my well-being. Common sense also comes into play here; don’t be the only truck parked on a dark or dead-end street. Safety in numbers, even if that number is a small one. Trip-plan smartly, have more than one option for taking your breaks, and you’ll be fine.

Eric's Comment
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The school will not charge for a re-test as long as they can see you are trying. Please email me:

Eric's Comment
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My mistake she did NOT hit the curb, but didn't take it wide enough.

PackRat's Comment
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My mistake she did NOT hit the curb, but didn't take it wide enough.

This is hard to imagine for me. How could it not be wide enough if no curb contact with the trailer?

Eric's Comment
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And the instructor never even said anything to her. They caught it on video in the office.


My mistake she did NOT hit the curb, but didn't take it wide enough.


This is hard to imagine for me. How could it not be wide enough if no curb contact with the trailer?

Philip G.'s Comment
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You win some, you lose some, I disagree with the rule of that company, its good to provide free training but that punishment is not fair, some hard rules are better to maintain the employers behavior's do you?

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