Student Driver In A Conundrum

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Kristopher A.'s Comment
member avatar

So here is the thing. I was going to school to get my CDL and had gotten one week in and just got my learner's permit. After getting my permit I had to take a DOT U.A. and I failed it. I am now almost finished with my SAP program and want to know if there are any companies that will help me go back and finish getting my CDL and possibly hire me.

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.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

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.

Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

I'm not going to sugar coat things, you have a very difficult road ahead of you. Obviously the drug test is a huge deal. I don't recall us ever having somebody pop in thats gone through a SAP program and been able to get their career underway. Companies that hire new drivers are already taking a huge risk before you even throw in drugs/alcohol. There are so many candidates that may not have that against them that will likely get an offer first. Another big problem is many of the Paid CDL Training Programs don't accept students that have already attended school elsewhere. I'd suggest you Apply For Paid CDL Training and see what happens. CFI, Western Express, C.r. England, Trans Am are a few others maybe worth looking in to. With this failed DOT test in your record its going to be very difficult so please don't waste your money on school without having several prehire letters. Out of curiosity are you on the hook for tuition from your original schooling? If you get an offer jump at it. It likely won't be the greatest paying but stick it out for a year or so and you'll get a few more options that may fit you better. Please let us know how it turns out.

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.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

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.

Prehire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Kristopher A.'s Comment
member avatar

I'm not going to sugar coat things, you have a very difficult road ahead of you. Obviously the drug test is a huge deal. I don't recall us ever having somebody pop in thats gone through a SAP program and been able to get their career underway. Companies that hire new drivers are already taking a huge risk before you even throw in drugs/alcohol. There are so many candidates that may not have that against them that will likely get an offer first. Another big problem is many of the Paid CDL Training Programs don't accept students that have already attended school elsewhere. I'd suggest you Apply For Paid CDL Training and see what happens. CFI, Western Express, C.r. England, Trans Am are a few others maybe worth looking in to. With this failed DOT test in your record its going to be very difficult so please don't waste your money on school without having several prehire letters. Out of curiosity are you on the hook for tuition from your original schooling? If you get an offer jump at it. It likely won't be the greatest paying but stick it out for a year or so and you'll get a few more options that may fit you better. Please let us know how it turns out.

I was going through CRST before. So yes I think I am on the hook for my tuition. At this time I just really have no idea what I am going to do. This has been my dream for a while now and I would have made it, all that happened was that I hadn't waited long enough since I quit. I am clean now and have been so for almost 3 months. If there is anything that I can do any recommendations that anyone might have would be amazing.

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.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

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.

Prehire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Hello Kristopher, welcome to our forum!

You already know you have got yourself in a pickle. We aren't going to judge you or condemn you, but we do need to talk straight with you.

Failing a drug test is usually the end of a trucking career. That's just the way it is. There are companies out here who are a little more lenient on some things, but failed drug tests are really high on the list of things that will keep you out of this business.

Let's talk about something else in your post. You told us these things...

I had to take a DOT U.A. and I failed it.
I am now almost finished with my SAP program and want to know if there are any companies that will help me go back and finish getting my CDL and possibly hire me.
I am clean now and have been so for almost 3 months.

I'll admit I am making an assumption, but it sounds like you were still using while you were doing your SAP program. Does that really sound like a solid decision to you? Are you really finished with the weed? You live in Colorado where it is perfectly legal. That makes no difference to these trucking companies who are dealing with federal laws and regulations. They are going to randomly test you. I was random tested something like nine times in a two year stretch once. You have got to decide which one is more important to you. This career requires a lot of commitment. For you, one of those commitments will be to stay clean. I don't think you will be able to manage both.

Now...

You told us something else that is seriously going to limit your opportunities.

I was going through CRST before. So yes I think I am on the hook for my tuition.

CRST doesn't play around with their contracts. You signed a document during that first week that has held up in court many times. CRST insists that your next employer pay off your debt if they want to hire you. Nobody is going to touch you under the circumstances you have got going.

Honestly, I think you have only one option, and it is going to be a long shot. Here's what I suggest. Complete your SAP program. Once that is done, get in contact with a recruiter at CRST. Tell them the whole story and see if there is any way they can get you back in their school. That way you can finish what you started with them. They may require a longer contract with you, but I just don't see you having anything to recommend you to anyone else at this point. If you really want this, I think you have got to beg them to take you back. You are also going to have to seriously do what it takes to stay in the game. That means stay away from the weed.

I wish you the best, and if you do follow this advice, I would appreciate you keeping us posted. We love hearing the success stories from our members here, but especially when they overcome odds like you have stacked against you. I wish you all the best!

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.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

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.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Stevo Reno's Comment
member avatar

Actually I didn't sign CRST's contract until like week 3 After almost testing out at ASD's school Once hired. In the 3 days at the terminal during orientation. So unless things changed since 9/2019 You may not be on the proverbial "hook" lol This was in Riverside Cali. Not Colorado ....NOW I did hear rumors CRST has went to the hair follicle testing as well as urine.

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.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Thanks Stevo. I wish we had all the facts. I am making some assumptions.

Kristopher A.'s Comment
member avatar

Hello Kristopher, welcome to our forum!

You already know you have got yourself in a pickle. We aren't going to judge you or condemn you, but we do need to talk straight with you.

Failing a drug test is usually the end of a trucking career. That's just the way it is. There are companies out here who are a little more lenient on some things, but failed drug tests are really high on the list of things that will keep you out of this business.

Let's talk about something else in your post. You told us these things...

double-quotes-start.png

I had to take a DOT U.A. and I failed it.

double-quotes-end.png
double-quotes-start.png

I am now almost finished with my SAP program and want to know if there are any companies that will help me go back and finish getting my CDL and possibly hire me.

double-quotes-end.png
double-quotes-start.png

I am clean now and have been so for almost 3 months.

double-quotes-end.png

I'll admit I am making an assumption, but it sounds like you were still using while you were doing your SAP program. Does that really sound like a solid decision to you? Are you really finished with the weed? You live in Colorado where it is perfectly legal. That makes no difference to these trucking companies who are dealing with federal laws and regulations. They are going to randomly test you. I was random tested something like nine times in a two year stretch once. You have got to decide which one is more important to you. This career requires a lot of commitment. For you, one of those commitments will be to stay clean. I don't think you will be able to manage both.

Now...

You told us something else that is seriously going to limit your opportunities.

double-quotes-start.png

I was going through CRST before. So yes I think I am on the hook for my tuition.

double-quotes-end.png

CRST doesn't play around with their contracts. You signed a document during that first week that has held up in court many times. CRST insists that your next employer pay off your debt if they want to hire you. Nobody is going to touch you under the circumstances you have got going.

Honestly, I think you have only one option, and it is going to be a long shot. Here's what I suggest. Complete your SAP program. Once that is done, get in contact with a recruiter at CRST. Tell them the whole story and see if there is any way they can get you back in their school. That way you can finish what you started with them. They may require a longer contract with you, but I just don't see you having anything to recommend you to anyone else at this point. If you really want this, I think you have got to beg them to take you back. You are also going to have to seriously do what it takes to stay in the game. That means stay away from the weed.

I wish you the best, and if you do follow this advice, I would appreciate you keeping us posted. We love hearing the success stories from our members here, but especially when they overcome odds like you have stacked against you. I wish you all the best!

Sir not to sound offended because I am not in anyway shape or form but your assumption of me partaking in weed while in my SAP program is incorrect. I actually just started it on Saturday and because of the fact that I have been clean for as long as I have the Dr. that I am going through said that my program should be done by the end of the week so long as I pass a drug test. I honestly made a mistake when I went to the school so soon after quitting smoking as I thought it was out of my system after a month clean but I was incorrect on that fact. It wasn't all the way out. I was only 4 nanograms over the limit according to the MRO that I spoke to.

Also I came to Colorado from North Carolina and since I have been in Colorado I have not touched weed once because of my desire to be a truck driver and the only reason that I am in Colorado is because this is where CRST sent me to go to school.

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.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

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.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Old School's Comment
member avatar

That is all great to hear. I knew I was making assumptions. For some reason I thought the SAP program took almost a year, but honestly, I don't really know a whole lot about it. Do you think it would be possible for CRST to take you back? I still think it might be your best option at this point.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

Anne A. (G13Momcat)'s Comment
member avatar

That is all great to hear. I knew I was making assumptions. For some reason I thought the SAP program took almost a year, but honestly, I don't really know a whole lot about it. Do you think it would be possible for CRST to take you back? I still think it might be your best option at this point.

Kristopher A. ;

I second the motion. Especially with your completed SAP certificate; you'd be optimal for them to 'rehire.'

Let us know regarding the contract, as Stevo said. Had you already signed it, or hadn't yet ???

Wish you well; keep us in the loop!

~ Anne ~

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

Kristopher A.'s Comment
member avatar

That is all great to hear. I knew I was making assumptions. For some reason I thought the SAP program took almost a year, but honestly, I don't really know a whole lot about it. Do you think it would be possible for CRST to take you back? I still think it might be your best option at this point.

Sadly they will not. I have already talked to them and pled my case. I need to finish my program and be done with it for 7 years before they will even look at me.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

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