The Time Has Come...

Topic 32188 | Page 1

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Brandon H.'s Comment
member avatar

The time has finally come! I just turned 21 and I'm about a month away from applying to CFI and beginning their student driver training program. I just wanted to get on here and ask a few questions. As of right now, I have not contacted a recruiter or applied for anything just yet. I just wanted to know if there was anything I need to do before I even get ahold of anybody. Like should I go ahead and get my CLP and medical card now before I call them, or should I just wait to get ahold of the recruiter and have them walk me through everything? I feel like already having the CLP and medical card when I walk in the door will save a lot of time, but I also wanna make sure I do things the right way. I've read the Illinois CDL handbook from cover to cover and feel like I could recite it word for word at this point (lol) and passed every practice test known to man , so I feel fully confident I can pass the actual CLP test. It's just so exciting that this time has finally come and I guess all the overwhelming feelings of finally starting a career are starting to get to me and it seems I've hit a roadblock on what to do next, so any guidance or advice would be greatly appreciated!

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.

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.

NaeNaeInNC's Comment
member avatar

In my personal opinion, it is better to have all your ducks in a row, even before the first conversation, so that if a company says go, you are ready.

Many DMV locations are STILL running at half or less capacity, and it can take weeks to months to get an appointment.

Had I not already made a commitment to my friend for childcare, I could have been in training within 7 days of applying.

Plus, by having all your ducks in a row first puts you in the light of being prepared. That's a good thing.

Make sure you don't put all your eggs in one basket with a single company. Just because you choose them, they may not choose you. Make a list of things that are needs, things that are wants, and a list of companies that check off as many as you can. Ultimately the name on the truck doesn't control your success or failure in this industry.

Good luck to you.

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.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

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.

Anne A. (and sometimes To's Comment
member avatar

The time has finally come! I just turned 21 and I'm about a month away from applying to CFI and beginning their student driver training program. I just wanted to get on here and ask a few questions. As of right now, I have not contacted a recruiter or applied for anything just yet. I just wanted to know if there was anything I need to do before I even get ahold of anybody. Like should I go ahead and get my CLP and medical card now before I call them, or should I just wait to get ahold of the recruiter and have them walk me through everything? I feel like already having the CLP and medical card when I walk in the door will save a lot of time, but I also wanna make sure I do things the right way. I've read the Illinois CDL handbook from cover to cover and feel like I could recite it word for word at this point (lol) and passed every practice test known to man , so I feel fully confident I can pass the actual CLP test. It's just so exciting that this time has finally come and I guess all the overwhelming feelings of finally starting a career are starting to get to me and it seems I've hit a roadblock on what to do next, so any guidance or advice would be greatly appreciated!

Howdy again, and welcome back Brandon! HAPPY BIRTHDAY~~!!!!!

That's awesome, man.

Did you get a chance to go through this?

SUPER valuable information, right ^^ there!

I'll see if I can get Big Scott to answer your particular question about the CDLP, but many companies DO want you to come in with that, especially since the ELDT mandates of 02/07/22. You'll now need your Medical Card before even being issued the permit; I posted the link in another thread, but here ya go: FMCSA: Steps to obtaining your CDL.

Last but not least, it wouldn't hurt to have a 'plan B' and as you are applying to CFI independently, we certainly encourage you to apply here, especially for a back up plan, AND a basis for comparison!

Apply For Paid CDL Training << There's no obligation, it's quick.

Best wishes, and congrats on the Birthday! Milestone, for sure~

~ Anne ~

ps: My youngest is a son, 18 and MAY follow suit, also! Daughter of 22 still undecided; doing CNC and ROTC for now.

good-luck.gif good-luck-2.gif good-luck.gif

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.

CSA:

Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)

The CSA is a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) initiative to improve large truck and bus safety and ultimately reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities that are related to commercial motor vehicle

FMCSA:

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

The FMCSA was established within the Department of Transportation on January 1, 2000. Their primary mission is to prevent commercial motor vehicle-related fatalities and injuries.

What Does The FMCSA Do?

  • Commercial Drivers' Licenses
  • Data and Analysis
  • Regulatory Compliance and Enforcement
  • Research and Technology
  • Safety Assistance
  • Support and Information Sharing

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.

Fm:

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.

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.

George B.'s Comment
member avatar

Anne covers all the bases. There are many great company sponsored training programs. As naenae stated dont put all your ducks into a row w one company. Obviously CFI is your first choice. Great company. I would strongly suggest having a few other choices. A few not on listed on TT are Continental Express, Witte Bros, Dutch Maid, Online Transport. Best of luck. Keep us posted!

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.

Brandon H.'s Comment
member avatar

Thank you all for the good advice and the birthday wishes! As far as "Plan B's", I do have a few lined up just in case things don't work out with CFI (Prime and Schneider being a few of them). This has been a decision I've been pondering for a few years now, and I'm just really excited to finally... FINALLY take the leap and start my career.

Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
member avatar

Hey Brandon,

With CFI get your medical card and permit. Get started with that. Save receipts, once out with your trainer they can show you how to get reimbursed for those things. If you are ready to go now, then fill out an app on the website www.cfidrive.com apply as student. The sooner you get the ball rolling the sooner your in a truck for yourself.

Best of luck to you.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Anne A. (and sometimes To's Comment
member avatar

Thank you all for the good advice and the birthday wishes! As far as "Plan B's", I do have a few lined up just in case things don't work out with CFI (Prime and Schneider being a few of them). This has been a decision I've been pondering for a few years now, and I'm just really excited to finally... FINALLY take the leap and start my career.

Told you he'd show up, Josh! Still, for plan B .. those you mentioned and then some are available here!

Apply For Paid CDL Training

Truck Driver's Career Guide

Keep us in the loop, and ask away...anytime.

~ Anne & Tom ~

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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