Florida State College At Jacksonville (FSCJ) - Commercial Vehicle Driving

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Seatack's Comment
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Finally started CDL school!

Background Info

I obtained my CDL permit in January of 2022. Initially I wasn’t sure of how I wanted to go about receiving driver training. Because I obtained my permit before the new ELDT laws went into effect I’m exempt from those stipulations. I knew I didn’t want to do any company sponsored training. The main reason being, having to go OTR for weeks or months at the beginning. Next was, trying to find a local job that would hire me with a permit and give me on the job training to obtain my class A license. After filling out multiple applications and speaking with driver supervisors and HR representatives it seemed like that wasn’t going to work out for one reason or another. Either they didn’t do that anymore or they didn’t have openings for any more permit holders. Next, I thought about getting some seat time with a friend and trying to tackle the State tests on my own. After reading stories on TT about others having trouble obtaining a job, as a rookie, without formal training, I decided that attending a local school would be my best course of action.

So, I began calling , and going to all the local schools here in Jacksonville to see what they had to offer. There are about 5 schools here in Jacksonville. I considered tuition amount, student to instructor ratio, location, and course length. After a month or so, I settled on attending Florida State College at Jacksonville (FSCJ).

So, that brought me to enrollment. What a shocker when I found out the class is fully booked for the next 5 months! I decided to enroll anyway. I made a job change to night shift to accommodate the upcoming class schedule, and waited .

It is a 320 hour/ 8 week course. Classes are held Monday through Friday from 8am to 5pm. Aside from their course being one of the most affordable for me locally, the campus location and class times allowed me to work full time while attending school. 16 students, 4 weeks in the classroom (1 instructor) and 4 weeks behind the wheel ( 4 instructors).

Class began on August 22, 2022.

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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.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

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.
PackRat's Comment
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Good luck with your plan. I'll be following.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Seatack's Comment
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Day 1 (8/22/22)

First day of class. We started the day with our Instructor introducing himself and then giving us a course syllabus and outline. The class is broken down into 4 sections.

CVD 1 - 2 weeks, Intro into trucking. Preparation for state permit exams (general knowledge, combination vehicles, air brakes). Must obtain permit to proceed to next class.

CVD 2 - 2 weeks, overview of required operational and daily skill set of commercial drivers (hours of service, monthly summary, trip planning and eldt theory)

CVD 3 - 4 weeks, Vehicle Inspection and backing

CVD 4 - 4 weeks, Road driving

(**CVD 3 and 4 are ran concurrently.)

After that we proceeded to student intros and then had a visit from our campus admin and security briefing. We concluded the day by starting the chapter on air brakes in the cdl manual.

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.

Combination Vehicle:

A vehicle with two separate parts - the power unit (tractor) and the trailer. Tractor-trailers are considered combination vehicles.

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.
Seatack's Comment
member avatar

Day 2 (8/23/22)

Started the day with our first recruiter visit! The company was TMC. I was familiar with seeing those beautiful black and chrome Peterbilts rolling around town. (not to mention, I just had a friend start with them about 2 months ago). He answered lots of questions, left us with a pamphlet and his business card. The recruiter passed around a sheet for us to put our contact info down for anyone who was interested.

We will be working out of our CDL manual and the J.J. Keller ELDT textbook for the next two weeks.

We went through chapter 1 in the CDL MANUAL (Intro). Then proceeded to finish the chapter on Air Brakes we started the previous day. We watched a J.J. Keller video on air brakes and then we left for our 1 hour lunch.

After lunch we had an open book quiz on air brakes. After the instructor graded our quizzes and we reviewed them, we headed out to the pad for our first look at a truck. He gave us an overview of brake components and an air brake demonstration.

We headed back in for reading assignments and then were relased.

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

Day 2 (8/23/22)

Started the day with our first recruiter visit! The company was TMC. I was familiar with seeing those beautiful black and chrome Peterbilts rolling around town. (not to mention, I just had a friend start with them about 2 months ago). He answered lots of questions, left us with a pamphlet and his business card. The recruiter passed around a sheet for us to put our contact info down for anyone who was interested.

We will be working out of our CDL manual and the J.J. Keller ELDT textbook for the next two weeks.

We went through chapter 1 in the CDL MANUAL (Intro). Then proceeded to finish the chapter on Air Brakes we started the previous day. We watched a J.J. Keller video on air brakes and then we left for our 1 hour lunch.

After lunch we had an open book quiz on air brakes. After the instructor graded our quizzes and we reviewed them, we headed out to the pad for our first look at a truck. He gave us an overview of brake components and an air brake demonstration.

We headed back in for reading assignments and then were relased.

Wish you the best, as well! Sure sounds like a great program, from a Florida (transplant!) and a NY'er BORN!

Glad to see ya stop back, sir! I'll be following, and hoping you all the best.

Let us know how it goes, all is well that ends well, good sir.

~ Anne ~

ps: Pre Hires , as TMC .. are a GOOD THING!

pps: for now, FOLLOW ALONG! Apply For Truck Driving Jobs

I'll still wonder .. Still not sure why you wouldn't go with Cypress . . . right in your back yard ~!

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.

Pre-hire:

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.

Pre Hire:

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.

Pre Hires:

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Seatack's Comment
member avatar

Day 3 (8/24/22)

Our class has been cut down to 15 students. One student failed his drug test.

Started the morning off playing Kahoot. (It’s a question and answer game online, you get points for answering correctly and bonus points for answering quickly). The instructor said we will use this multiple times as an interactive review. This time it was all about Air Brakes. I placed second.

We had Air Brake quiz number 2. It was graded and then we reviewed it. Next up we started on section 6 in the cdl manual, Combination Vehicles. We then watched a J.J. Keller video on backing (90 degree alley dock, straight, offset and parallel. After the video, it was time for lunch.

We returned from lunch and had our final written test on Air Brakes. Following that, we continued and finished the Combination Vehicles section of the CDL manual.

We watched another J.J. Keller video, this time on Coupling & Uncoupling. We then headed out to the pad for a demonstration on coupling and uncoupling. We were given 4 chapters to read in our ELDT textbook and then we were dismissed.

Day 4 (8/25/22)

Pop quiz! Surprise, surprise (not really).

Quiz was actually open book and all about combination vehicles. We once again reviewed and discussed the results. Now it was time for another Kahoot! I really wanted to win this one but ended up placing 2nd, again. This was all about Combination vehicles, we all had a good laugh at some of the answers that were put into the game (my instructor likes to add what he calls a bit of “dad” humor).

We then had Combination Vehicle quiz #2, which was closed book. Some students didn’t do so well. Some complained that there were questions on the quiz that we didn’t talk about. Our instructor agreed but, reiterated the need to read the designated chapters on our own as that information could be found there. If it’s in the manual, or textbook, it’s fair game!

We played 2 more Kahoot games on combination vehicles. This time I placed 1st on both! The guy who beat me out on the first two games placed second both times. It looks like he and I will be battling it out for the next few weeks. I love competition and I’m always up for the challenge!

We then broke for lunch. When we returned we had our Final test on combination vehicles.

After test review we had our first introduction to the Pre-Trip inspection. We were given a packet developed by the college with all the information needed to pass that portion of the state test. We were also told about our state testing procedures and given dates.

All 5 instructors at the college are state certified. We will do all of our testing with them. When we get to the driving portion of the course we will be split into groups of 4, and paired with one of the instructors for the entire 4 weeks. We will not be “tested out” by the instructor we were paired with. It will be one of the other 4.

Now onto the longest section of the CDL manual, general knowledge. We got thru about a fourth of that section and then we were dismissed for the day.

(There are 4 other students who also have their permit already. We have a bit of a head start seeing how this isn’t the first time we’ve reviewed these sections of the CDL manual.)

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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.

Combination Vehicle:

A vehicle with two separate parts - the power unit (tractor) and the trailer. Tractor-trailers are considered combination vehicles.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Seatack's Comment
member avatar

Good luck with your plan. I'll be following.

Thank you PackRat! As you can probably tell by the dates I'm a little further ahead in the class than my diary is so far. I have taken good notes, I'll be sure to get caught up ASAP.

double-quotes-start.png

Wish you the best, as well! Sure sounds like a great program, from a Florida (transplant!) and a NY'er BORN!

Glad to see ya stop back, sir! I'll be following, and hoping you all the best.

Let us know how it goes, all is well that ends well, good sir.

~ Anne ~

ps: Pre Hires , as TMC .. are a GOOD THING!

pps: for now, FOLLOW ALONG! Apply For Truck Driving Jobs

I'll still wonder .. Still not sure why you wouldn't go with Cypress . . . right in your back yard ~!

Thank you Anne! I will be sure to check out those links!

Honestly, I visited Cypress and wasnt impressed. It is close to me but, FSCJ was even closer. They also kept pushing the contract on me, and I really didn't want that. I was fine with paying for school on my own.

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.

Pre-hire:

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.

Pre Hire:

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.

Pre Hires:

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Seatack's Comment
member avatar

Day 5 (8/26/22)

We started the morning continuing our discussion on the pre trip packet we received the previous day. Our instructor then told us about all the things that are listed in the “automatic fail” list for our state tests. We then watched a J.J. Keller video on pre and post trip inspections.

We had a short break and then took a non-graded quiz on “in-cab inspection”. After the quiz review, we dove right back into the general knowledge section of the CDL manual, specifically the section on vehicle control (accelerating, steering, stopping, backing safely and shifting). We then were released for lunch.

After returning from lunch we watched a YouTube video by CDL college on shifting. I was very familiar with this video as I had watched it multiple times already. I feel it really explains the concept of double clutching extremely well, as well as the positions of the “hard” and “soft” walls.

After that, we continued in the general knowledge section of the CDL manual.

It was now Friday and we made it through our 1st week successfully. We were rewarded by our instructor, who assigned us seven chapters to read in our ELDT textbook for the weekend! (Speed management, space management, hazard perception, night ops, extreme weather, railroad crossing, and skid control)

Day 6 (8/29/22)

Monday morning. We started the morning by setting DMV appointments for all students who didn’t have their permit already. There will be no class on Thursday, everyone will be given the day to go to DMV to test for their permits. Those of us who had it already would have a day off! Yay!

Another pop quiz! This time on turns, intersections and roundabouts. There were a bunch of students who evidently didn’t do the reading assignments over the weekend. Our instructor went on to tell us the importance of these tests and quizzes. Although passing the 3 state mandated tests will ensure you get your CDL license, this is a college course. You need an average score of 80% or C average, over the entire 8 week course in order to receive the 320-hour career certificate. A D is passing (70%) but not good enough for that career training certificate. He continued on by telling us the difficulties we would encounter as a rookie driver looking for work without it.

We were given a break from the reading and lectures we had encountered the first week. Today was video day!

We watched 8 videos in total.

6 from J.J.Keller - Road hazards - Distracted driving - Night driving - Railroad crossings - Mountain driving - Emergency maneuvers

2 from YouTube - Railroad crossings accidents - Trucks using runaway ramps

Lunch was sandwiched somewhere in between all theses videos. We were told tomorrow we would have our first quiz on general knowledge. Our instructor assigned a few chapters in the ELDT textbook (post crash procedures, drugs/alcohol, driver wellness and handling cargo). We were also told to read section 3 in the CDL manual on cargo securement. Then it was time to go home.

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.

Double Clutch:

To engage and then disengage the clutch twice for every gear change.

When double clutching you will push in the clutch, take the gearshift out of gear, release the clutch, press the clutch in again, shift the gearshift into the next gear, then release the clutch.

This is done on standard transmissions which do not have synchronizers in them, like those found in almost all Class A trucks.

Double Clutching:

To engage and then disengage the clutch twice for every gear change.

When double clutching you will push in the clutch, take the gearshift out of gear, release the clutch, press the clutch in again, shift the gearshift into the next gear, then release the clutch.

This is done on standard transmissions which do not have synchronizers in them, like those found in almost all Class A trucks.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

DWI:

Driving While Intoxicated

Anne A. (and sometimes To's Comment
member avatar
Honestly, I visited Cypress and wasn't impressed. It is close to me but, FSCJ was even closer. They also kept pushing the contract on me, and I really didn't want that. I was fine with paying for school on my own.

I hear ya, man. Clay is kinda abrupt; he means well, though. In retrospect, keep in mind the fact that the contract is their way to recoup their investment, with training you. Alas, guaranteeing you a job, upon successful completion. It's really not much to ask; most (if not all) training companies require this of their students. Some even pay you, while training, such as Prime. One of the best, earning while learning. CRST even has folks sign a 'non compete' clause; can't say it's 'unfair,' however.

Keep in mind, that there will certainly be additional training when you select your company of choice. TMC for instance; has their own training school, that could've bypassed your 'Uni' as they say, proper! Just work hard, stay focused, and as you get closer to the finale', consider the pre hires as mentioned above. :)

Florida State IS Great (Haha!! Seminole alum, here..!) Really sounds like they ARE training y'all well. That's not always the 'norm' we hear, re: private schooling. They provided all those JJ Keller manuals and logs to you? That's an awesome program, I've heard.

Are you guys using this training module, by chance? JJ Keller Safe & Smart . When you have time (haha!) look that over. It deals with endorsements, and is pretty awesome, especially if available in your curriculum. It enables you to get the HazMat endorsement early on, while you're already studying and learning. It's harder for someone getting licensed after the ELDT to obtain later on, than it would be.. say, PackRat.

So much has changed, with the ELDT rollout/mandate in February; I was Tom's 'tutor' when he went to school in '03, so I learned along with...but wow, things have accelerated!

Stay the course, good sir. Sounds like you're doing great; thanks for sharing with us!

Best forward, (and reverse...when the time comes, haha!)

~ Anne & Tom ~

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

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

Pre Hire:

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.

Pre Hires:

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Seatack's Comment
member avatar
Are you guys using this training module, by chance? JJ Keller Safe & Smart . When you have time (haha!) look that over. It deals with endorsements, and is pretty awesome, especially if available in your curriculum. It enables you to get the HazMat endorsement early on, while you're already studying and learning. It's harder for someone getting licensed after the ELDT to obtain later on, than it would be.. say, PackRat.

Our curriculum doesn’t deal with endorsements at all. Fortunately for me, I already have the tanker endorsement on my permit. I have also passed the doubles/triples as well. We have a week of “night driving” coming up and I will go to DMV and take the written for the Hazmat endorsement during the day then. I took my ELDT training online for the Hazmat endorsement to satisfy the new law. I actually already have my TWIC card too, which should speed up the background check thru TSA/Homeland Security. As you can probably tell, I wanted to get as far ahead as I could before starting CDL school.

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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

Doubles:

Refers to pulling two trailers at the same time, otherwise known as "pups" or "pup trailers" because they're only about 28 feet long. However there are some states that allow doubles that are each 48 feet in length.

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.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

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