New CDL Holder, Need Some Suggestions.

Topic 29059 | Page 1

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Daniel I.'s Comment
member avatar

New CDL A holder with Double/Triple, Tanker and Hazmat. Looking for a company who will take me and my 80lb Pitbull, 2 DUI's 19 and 21 years ago and preferably will allow me to use my VA benefits for the VA apprenticeship program (Thats an extra $1000+ a month) I didnt spend damn near 10 years serving this country to not take advantage of that. I will be running out of Western PA, I'm Single and no kids so home time is not something I'm worried about. Help me out guys, I know the dog and the 2 DUI's are a killer but good god I was 18/20 at the time and Im 39 now, does 20 years of no problems and 10 years Army service mean nothing? Thank you all in advanced who reply.

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

DUI:

Driving Under the Influence

Mr. Curmudgeon's Comment
member avatar

Hi, Daniel! First off, thanks for doing that thing you did for ten years. You'll find quite a number of us on here are Vets, and darned proud. As for companies that have pet policies AND offer VA OJT benefits, Apply For Truck Driving Jobs is a good place to start. Schneider, Prime, and Swift are a few that I know of from previous discussions here that have VA benefits, and also have pet policies. The DUI's are always going to be an issue that they will ask about, but a lot of the outcome (especially with the time separation) will be in your responses to the questions. You served for 10 years, and if you have a clean abstract, your decision making and maturity can be part of the discussion. You may not be able to take the pibble with you until you get done with training, so perhaps a family member or friend can watch him/her for a while to allow you to learn the ropes and go solo.

If you reach out to the big outfits, many of them will be more than happy to talk to you about what they offer for veterans, pet policies, and benefits. Make a bunch of applications, that will give you a bunch of options.

Good luck, and welcome!!!

DUI:

Driving Under the Influence

PackRat's Comment
member avatar

The VA Apprenticeship Program has a cutoff, in that you have to be enrolled within a set time after separation from military service.

Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks for your service.

The DUI's that long ago - will probably not weigh on a hiring decision at this point, as much as if they were more recent.

Your 80lb pitbull likely will though. Even if it WASN'T A PITBULL - 80lbs is over what most companies will allow for a ride-along pet. Then again - some companies don't allow (so-called) "dangerous breeds". I have a 90lb Rottweiler, that likely wouldn't be allowed either.

Your "new CDL", while nice - isn't going to get you much - with NO EXPERIENCE. So you are going to have to go in as a TRAINEE, and jump through the same hoops as Non-CDL Holders. Some companies may even require you to DOWNGRADE your CDL to a regular operators - obtain a CDL Permit and go through all the testing AGAIN. (example: last time I checked Jim Palmer would have required me to downgrade - which would have also led to losing some of my endorsements - mainly, my PASSENGER endorsement).

APPLY APPLY APPLY - but be prepared to start at the bottom (with no experience), and be prepared to NOT TAKE YOUR 80lb DOG.

Some companies might offer the option to take the dogger, IF YOU LEASE. DO NOT LEASE RIGHT OUT OF THE GATE. Learning the industry, and how to operate successfully and SAFELY is difficult enough - without having to WORRY ABOUT MAKING A LEASE PAYMENT. Also, leasing is 1099 Contractor Employment - which means you bear the burden of all taxes - and as a contractor DO NOT GET BENEFITS EITHER.

I say this up front - because the temptation to lease, as an enticement to being able to take a LARGE DOG with you may be great - but it is (typically) A RECIPE FOR FAILURE.

So really - start applying EVERYWHERE. Being from Ohio puts you in a good position to get a hire from pretty much EVERY MAJOR COMPANY that does training (whereas me being in Fort Lauderdale leaves me, pretty much ZERO OPTIONS - except maybe CRST - NOT!)

Best of luck - please KEEP US POSTED WITH YOUR PROGRESS - both on the DUI thing AND THE DOG.

We like (NEED) to know how things turn out for people - so we can give better advice TO THE NEXT GUY.

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.

DUI:

Driving Under the Influence

Papa Pig's Comment
member avatar

I am In werners military apprenticeship program now. So far so good, the extra money helps. How long have you been out? I don’t think they have a size restriction but you would have to pay a deposit

Blonko M.'s Comment
member avatar

The VA Apprenticeship Program has a cutoff, in that you must be selected inside a set time after partition from military assistance.

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