Davey And CDL

Topic 739 | Page 1

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Traffic Jam (SunnyWalker.'s Comment
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OK. I sent in an application to Midland Community College in Midland, TX. If I am accepted for the next program it starts this June 10, 2013. Probably too late and perhaps they will accept me for later in the summer. They have another class starting in Aug I believe. I'll keep you posted. Meanwhile its time to get on the "Texas Commercial Motor Vehicle Driver Handbook" and the GREAT STUDY AIDS ON THIS WEBSITE! THANKS!

Commercial Motor Vehicle:

A commercial motor vehicle is any vehicle used in commerce to transport passengers or property with either:

  • A gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more
  • A gross combination weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more which includes a towed unit with a gross vehicle weight rating of more than 10,000 pounds
Old School's Comment
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Dave, you may think I'm crazy, but I want to challenge you to forget about even looking at that Texas CMV handbook. Trust me on this - you're going to ace those exams just by using the High Road Training Program and you're retention of the material will be there whenever you need it. I hope you'll take my advice, because I can guarantee you it's solid and proven.

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.

CMV:

Commercial Motor Vehicle

A CMV is a vehicle that is used as part of a business, is involved in interstate commerce, and may fit any of these descriptions:

  • Weighs 10,001 pounds or more
  • Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of 10,001 pounds or more
  • Is designed or used to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver) not for compensation
  • Is designed or used to transport 9 or more passengers (including the driver) for compensation
  • Is transporting hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Brett Aquila's Comment
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Yap, our CDL test preparation course, the High Road Training Program Old School mentioned, has the entire CDL manual built right in. So there's no need to study the CDL Manual separate from the course because the course is the CDL manual smile.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.
Traffic Jam (SunnyWalker.'s Comment
member avatar

I understand what you are saying and I see the material from the manual right in your course. However, being new to the entire industry I think it might be appropriate for me to at least review the manual. Wouldn't want to disappoint ole Rick after all the work he put into it (as in Rick Perry). I like the format of presentation and the ability to review while reading. I also like the quick application of what I've read as I work my way through the material. Thanks again!

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.

Traffic Jam (SunnyWalker.'s Comment
member avatar

I received a return call from Midland College and I will report there tomorrow(6/5/13) for the DOT Physical and drug test. Then class begins on Monday June 10, 2013!!

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.

Brett Aquila's Comment
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Awesome! I'm glad you were able to start now instead of having to wait until later in the summer.

Traffic Jam (SunnyWalker.'s Comment
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Thanks Brett, I thought about waiting on purpose, but would rather get the outdoor training done during the nicer weather rather then colder weather.

Today I passed the DOT Physical and drug Test. I am all signed up, paid up, etc., and even signed up for room and board there on campus. I was surprised, you see a lot of Community Colleges running truck driving schools. Well, when I arrived down there on campus I realized this is not a Community College. The official name is "Midland College" and they offer many programs of study and a BA degree. Here is the skinny on the Trucking RE me:

$4100.00 Tuition and fees (four week program) 120.00 Deposit on room 749.08 Room and board for duation of course (June 09-July 4th/last day class is July 5th).

Included in this: DOT physical, drug test, CDL permit and test, books, related stuff and anything else needed. You come out of the class with a CDL. The class right now runs on Summer Schedule which is Mon-Thr 7:00 AM - 5:00 PM. Three day weekend.

Mike Sanchez heads up the program there at Midland College. I was visiting with him and right away he asked me if I had signed up or made application to any company. I told him I was thinking about Schneider and would apply about halfway through the course. He talked to me about considering more closely related industries that are right here in the immediate area I live (Pampa TX, close to Amarillo, TX). This area is big on two things: Agriculture and Oil/Gas. Sanchez encouraged me to look at driving for an oil company and quoted some starting salaries that were pretty impressive. He stated that this would get me home much more often. I decided to really consider it and he is going to work with me while in the program to consider some of these companies.

Class starts this Monday, June 10, 2013. I'll post some updates but it will be pretty regular stuff (open up a CDL Manual). I worry about shifting, not the "regular type of shifting" but when they have that little red knob alongside the shifter and you pop it in and out?!? That I could never understand-it was on a few school buses I drove in my younger years. Oh, well, I won't get uptight about it just go in with an open mind. After some of the folk I have seen driving I know I can do this, huh, huh!

If you are reading this and wonder if you could learn all this info this site has some terrific and effective helps and I encourage you to take a look at them. I will be continuing to use them while I am at Midland College.

-Davey

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.

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.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

It sounds like you're on your way! Everything about the costs involved and the length of the schooling sounds good. It's also nice that the head of the school knows some places that might get you home more often. That's the hardest thing to find is a company that will get you home when you're fresh out of school. Most of those jobs require some experience first, but there's always exceptions. The trick is finding them.

Yeah, don't worry about learning shifting or backing or anything else. You'll have no problems picking it up. Those buttons you flip on the shifter are range control buttons - usually referred to as "the splitter". On a 9 or 10 speed they shift from low range to high range. The pattern is a normal H pattern like in a car. You start with the button in the down position for low range and go through the gears like you would in a car 1-2-3-4-5. Then you flip the button to the up position and start over with the same pattern you just did. But because you're in the high range, the gears will now be 6-7-8-9-10. Each hole in the gear pattern functions for two different gears, depending on what range you're in.

If you were on a 13, 15, or 18 speed there are two range buttons. But I highly doubt you'll be training on any of those.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Traffic Jam (SunnyWalker.'s Comment
member avatar

Brett, Now that sounds real easy. I guess you get good at remembering what gear you are in? Do all the stick shifter trucks have that little gohicky splitter knob? What I mean to say, is that THE system? Also, like i said I really appreciated Mr. Sanchez encouraging me and all. However, I realize that to get a job driving and getting home real often right off the bat is a lot to hope for. Might take awhile and my spouse and I have talked it over and accept that it might take 6 mths to a year. I was talking to an outfit here in town where I take my vehicles to have them repaired. They mentioned a oil company I won't give the name but think Cheney. They related to me the drivers seem to be told upon hiring that it'll be HOS and all. Then when on the job they do "creative" journals and are used to do some of the "oil field work, unloading, fracting, whatever". Now I realize that this may just be a "story" and all but how does one resist this when in the field? For me, I could just walk away from it as I have paid for my own training. Is this common? Can a driver just refuse to do this? I figure and know that the "created" journaling is illegal and all. OK, thanks for the input and replies.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
Do all the stick shifter trucks have that little gohicky splitter knob? What I mean to say, is that THE system?

Yap. Pretty much every standard-shift big rig has that setup. There are some automatics, but very few, and they're getting more scarce all the time. They're too expensive to buy & maintain.

The oil fields are a world of their own. Indeed the drivers rarely just drive. Most of them also have to do a fair amount of physical labor on the job sites and it can be hot, dangerous, and messy. The money is normally really good, but the work is hard and the hours are really long.

As far as "creative logbooks", I drove for 15 years ('93-'08) and I never had electronic logs. I always had paper logs and I pretty much made up everything I wrote down. Nothing I did ever matched the logbook , and that was how the industry was. If someone came into a truck stop and started talking about how many hours they had available to drive, we would all smile and kinda give the rookie a pat on the head and say "Welcome to trucking my friend. You'll learn how things are really done soon enough." Nobody cared about logbooks other than making them appear legal. But what you wrote down rarely had anything to do with what you were actually doing. You did what you had to do to get the job done and then you wrote down whatever you wanted to - as long as it appeared legal.

A lot of owner operators and small trucking companies are still like this. The major companies have gone to electronic logs for the most part, but the smaller companies haven't. So cheating the logbook with paper logs is just how things are done by most drivers. And the companies kind of expect it. They'll give you all the work you want and it's up to you to keep that logbook appearing legal.

So it's like two totally different cultures within trucking now. There's the major companies who are doing things basically by the book, and the smaller companies that do whatever it takes to maximize that paycheck each week and stay out of trouble most of the time.

So if you're not comfortable with the idea of lying on your logbook or being asked to run illegally, I would stick with the major companies that run electronic logbooks. But if you don't mind "playing the game" a little bit, the smaller companies are usually run with a "wink and a nod" policy of don't ask, don't tell. Just get the job done, make that paycheck, and stay out of trouble with the law.

Back in the day, cheating on the logbook was just how it was done. Getting caught and paying some fines was just the price of doing business. You made more money cheating than you did running legal, even with the fines from time to time. And every so often you would get caught one too many times and get fired. Didn't matter. One phone call and you had a new job the same day. That's just how it was done.

Logbook:

A written or electronic record of a driver's duty status which must be maintained at all times. The driver records the amount of time spent driving, on-duty not driving, in the sleeper berth, or off duty. The enforcement of the Hours Of Service Rules (HOS) are based upon the entries put in a driver's logbook.

Electronic Logs:

Electronic Onboard Recorder

Electronic Logbook

A device which records the amount of time a vehicle has been driven. If the vehicle is not being driven, the operator will manually input whether or not he/she is on duty or not.

Owner Operator:

An owner-operator is a driver who either owns or leases the truck they are driving. A self-employed driver.

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