New Driver

Topic 29708 | Page 1

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Raymon C.'s Comment
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Hello all, for my 30th Bday I decided to take on truck driving school. I have never drove manual and when given the option if I wanted to learn on manual or automatic I said manual as I know I would have better opportunities without the restriction. I almost got went with CRST and thanks to these threads on here I changed my mind and decided to pay the money for school up front ($6,000) and select a company that will provide great pay and tuition reimbursement.

Do you think I will have a hard time learning on a manual?

The company I I think I want to go with is Melton truck lines, anything I should be worried about?

Any pointers for a new driver?

PackRat's Comment
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Welcome to the Trucking Truth site.

The biggest pointer we would recommend is to NOT attend a private school. You would have a much, much greater chance of learning and having a guaranteed job afterwards if you chose the company sponsored training program option.

Check out these links:

High Road CDL Training ProgramPaid CDL Training ProgramsApply For Paid CDL Training

Apply For Truck Driving Jobs

Trucking Company ReviewsBecoming A Truck Driver: The Raw Truth About Truck Driving

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

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.

Jared H.'s Comment
member avatar

Welcome! I just finished CDL school last Friday and take my test this Wednesday. Biggest unsolicited advice I have -

Go to the pre-trip inspection page on this site. Download all the pictures. Get 3x5 cards and write out your schools verbiage for your pre-trip and tape it on. And spend every day working on memorizing the pre-trip. It’s about the inky thing the instructors can’t help you do.

Best of luck and keep us posted!

Pre-trip Inspection:

A pre-trip inspection is a thorough inspection of the truck completed before driving for the first time each day.

Federal and state laws require that drivers inspect their vehicles. Federal and state inspectors also may inspect your vehicles. If they judge a vehicle to be unsafe, they will put it “out of service” until it is repaired.

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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