Problem With Sage Driving School; Need Some Help

Topic 5135 | Page 1

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Larry P.'s Comment
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I went through the Sage Driving Program during July and early August. I've now failed the CDL Driving Test twice. I am 65 y.o. and need a job. I was a little intimidated by the truck in the beginning and probably took a little longer getting acclimated to the thing than people younger than me. But also, Sage cancelled my first two observations and so I had my first driving experience without the benefit of having ever ridden in a truck before. Now, the way they schedule at Sage is your Drive Times are, basically, about three and a half hours. So, I had my first two drive times in the same day, having never been in a truck before, except in the yard behind the school where I drove in first gear and learned to brake and clutch. I picked up the gears fairly easily, but my biggest problem was that when approaching a signal light and turn, I would get very anxious about downshifting properly and slowing down enough to safely turn the corner. There is a lot to think about when you've never done it before. Anyway, starting the third week of school, I was basically not scheduled for anything except for two days a week during the 3rd and 4th week. And those days also included a timed pre-trip inspection. So, I had to observe and drive in two days each of those weeks. I told the guy who runs the school that I was not ready to take the CDL test a full week prior to my test date. I told him I needed more drive time; that I was not ready to test. But he did not schedule me to drive the entire week prior to the test. I had my final drive on a Tuesday afternoon, and I tested the next Tuesday morning. All I did was observe 4 times during that week, because they had cancelled so many of my observations that they had to cram a bunch of them into that final week. After I failed the test, all he would do was give me one hour of drive time and about 30 minutes of skill review before I had to take the test again, which I failed. I failed both at the alley dock. I am extremely ****ed at Sage. They have an arbitrary schedule that they follow, and they do not alter it for those who are not progressing at the rate they want. Of my class of seven students, only three passed on the first try. So, my question is: Is there a company in South Carolina who will rent me a tractor-trailer to practice with and test with? Sage is going to make me wait weeks before I can test again with their truck. It is really an outrageous situation. I am perfectly capable of doing this. I just needed a little more time to acclimate properly to the truck. If he had given me the time during that last week, I believe I would have settled down and passed the test. Now I'm in a jam. I didn't take this course out of curiosity. I need a job.

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.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

PR aka Road Hog's Comment
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Brett has several great articles and pages to help with training, including Truck Driving schools in different areas. You mentioned SOUTH CAROLINA and that is a link to the SC web page. also check out the link on the top for Truck Driving Schools and company sponsored training.

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.

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