ELDT Alley Dock And Parallel Parking

Topic 34176 | Page 1

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John P.'s Comment
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I recently received my CDL-A license and have a question for anyone who might know. Well I know ally docking and some other maneuvers are no longer part of the CDL test. I was reading that they should still be part of the ELDT behind the wheel curriculum. However the school I attended never had any sort of training on these. I was thinking of contacting the school to ask for some extra training if this is indeed something that should have been taught. If so can anyone point to a regulation that shows this. Or should I just expect this is something I will learn when I am in job training?

Any thoughts and suggestions would be very much 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.
BK's Comment
member avatar

Hi John. Yes, training is not what it should be in most cases. If you didn’t learn the alley dock in school, you will probably get instruction on it when you get hired by a company and go through their training program and, hopefully, go out on the road with an experienced trainer. In the meantime, there are many instructional videos on YouTube that teach the alley dock and all the other backing maneuvers. Videos can’t replace the real thing, but they can help you understand the concepts.

Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

The "modernized" testing does not include alley dock. There is parallel parking, but it's disguised as "backing offset".

A CDL school's job is to get you a CDL, not much else. So don't go asking for more training beyond the requirements needed to get you your CDL.

The ally dock in one form or another is one of the most common types of backing after "straight back" that a driver will do. But the principles are all there in the required maneuvers.

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.
Big T's Comment
member avatar

I recently received my CDL-A license and have a question for anyone who might know. Well I know ally docking and some other maneuvers are no longer part of the CDL test. I was reading that they should still be part of the ELDT behind the wheel curriculum. However the school I attended never had any sort of training on these. I was thinking of contacting the school to ask for some extra training if this is indeed something that should have been taught. If so can anyone point to a regulation that shows this. Or should I just expect this is something I will learn when I am in job training?

Any thoughts and suggestions would be very much appreciated.

This is one of those areas in the trucking industry where reality doesn't match legality unless someone gets their hand slapped. Yes, legally, schools are supposed to provide range training in six areas: vehicle inspection, straight-line backing, alley dock (either 45 or 90), sight side parallel, blind side parallel, and offset back. 49 CFR Part 380 lists all the ELDT requirements.

As Errol points out, a CDL school aims to teach you the skills necessary to get your license. Why would a school want to spend time teaching a skill that isn't required on the test? I was guilty of this thought process until one of our other schools got in trouble with the FMCSA for not teaching one of the parallels.

The state of Tennessee only tests for three backing skills. It tests the straight-line, offset-right, and 90-degree alley dock. Our program is only ten days on the range, so why would I waste valuable time on maneuvers that students do not need to pass their test?

I would not push for more training, though. You will get more valuable and realistic training once you are on the road than you will at any school. Remember, the school is there to get you your license, not make a driver out of you. That happens with your trainer and with time and experience.

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

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Trucker Kearsey 's Comment
member avatar

The way the Entry Level Driver Training is laid out... it discusses what should be taught the entire first year. Including OTR lifestyle and "theory". What does that mean? It means that most companies will have some sort of safety meetings, videos or other material available once your mentoring, team training, phase 2 or whatever that company calls it.

And yes, there are companies that will throw a recent CDL grad the keys to a truck and say "here ya go". Most arent going to. So be sure to ask how lomg the training period is. Thanks

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.

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