How to Select a Truck Driving School near Bridgeville California
Congratulations on your decision to become a truck driver and enroll in a CDL school near Bridgeville CA. Maybe it has always been your goal to hit the open road while operating a big ole tractor trailer. Or perhaps you have done some research and have found that an occupation as a truck driver offers good income and flexible work prospects. Whatever your reason is, it’s essential to receive the proper training by picking the right CDL school in your area. When evaluating your options, there are a number of factors that you’ll need to consider prior to making your ultimate selection. Location will undoubtedly be important, particularly if you have to commute from your Bridgeville residence. The cost will also be of importance, but picking a school based only on price is not the ideal method to ensure you’ll get the appropriate training. Just remember, your objective is to master the skills and knowledge that will allow you to pass the CDL examinations and become a professional truck driver. So keeping that target in mind, just how do you select a truck driving school? That is what we are going to discuss in the remainder of this article. But first, we are going to discuss a little bit about which CDL license you will ultimately need.
Which Commercial Drivers License Should You Get?
To drive commercial vehicles lawfully in California and within the United States, a driver must attain a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The 3 license classes that a driver can apply for are Class A, Class B and Class C. Given that the topic of this article is how to choose a truck driver school near Bridgeville CA, we will discuss Class A and Class B licenses. What differentiates each class of CDL is the type of vehicle that the driver can operate in addition to the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) or GCWR (Gross Combination Weight Rating). Below are brief explanations of the 2 classes.
Class A CDL. A Class A Commercial Drivers License is needed to drive any vehicle that has a GCWR of greater than 26,000 lbs., including a towed vehicle of more than 10,000 lbs. A few of the vehicles that operators may be able to drive with Class A licenses are:
- Interstate or Intrastate Tractor Trailers
- Trucks with Double or Triple Trailers
- Tanker Trucks
- Livestock Carriers
- Class B and Class C Vehicles
Class B CDL. A Class B Commercial Drivers License is needed to drive single vehicles having a GVWR of more than 26,000 lbs., or a GCWR of more than 26,000 lbs. including a towed vehicle weighing up to 10,000 lbs. A few of the vehicles that operators may be qualified to drive with Class B licenses are:
- Tractor Trailers
- Dump Trucks
- Cement Mixers
- Large Buses
- Class C Vehicles
Both Class A and Class B Commercial Drivers Licenses might also need endorsements to operate certain types of vehicles, including school or passenger buses. And a Class A licensee, with the proper needed endorsements, may drive any vehicle that a Class B licensee is qualified to operate.
How to Research a Truck Driving School
As soon as you have determined which Commercial Drivers License you wish to obtain, you can begin the undertaking of researching the Bridgeville CA truck driver schools that you are considering. As previously discussed, location and cost will certainly be your initial concerns. But it can’t be stressed enough that they should not be your sole considerations. Other factors, for instance the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are similarly or even more important. So below are several additional factors that you should research while performing your due diligence prior to choosing, and especially paying for, your truck driving training.
Are the Schools Certified or Accredited ? Very few Bridgeville CA trucking schools are accredited because of the demanding process and cost to the schools. However, certification is more prevalent and is provided by the Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI). A school is not required to become certified, but there are certain advantages. Prospective students recognize that the training will be of the highest caliber, and that they will receive plenty of driving time. For example, PTDI requires 44 hours of real driving time, not simulations or ride-alongs. So if a school’s course is certified (the course, not the school is certified), students know that the curriculum and training will meet the very high benchmarks set by PTDI.
How Long in Operation? One indicator to help measure the quality of a trucking school is how long it has been in business. A poorly reviewed or a fly by night school typically will not be in business very long, so longevity is a plus. Having said that, even the best of Bridgeville CA schools had to begin from their opening day of training, so consider it as one of multiple qualifications. You can also find out what the school’s track record is pertaining to successful licensing and employment of its graduating students. If a school won’t share those stats, search elsewhere. The schools should also have relationships with local and national trucking firms. Having numerous contacts not only affirms a quality reputation within the trade, but also bolsters their job assistance program for graduates. It also wouldn’t be a bad idea to check with the California licensing authority to confirm that the CDL trucker schools you are considering are in compliance.
How Effective is the Training? As a minimum requirement, the schools should be licensed in California and employ instructors that are experienced and trained. We will talk more about the teachers in the following section. In addition, the student to instructor ratio should be no higher than 4 to 1. If it’s any higher, then students will not be getting the personalized attention they will need. This is especially true concerning the one-on-one instruction for behind the wheel training. And look out for any school that claims it can train you to drive trucks in a comparatively short period of time. Training to be a truck driver and to drive a tractor trailer skillfully requires time. Most Bridgeville CA schools offer training programs that run from three weeks to as long as two months, based on the class of license or type of vehicle.
How Good are the Instructors? As already stated, it’s important that the instructors are trained to teach driving techniques and experienced as both drivers and instructors. Even though several states have minimum driving time requirements to be certified as an instructor, the more professional driving experience a teacher has the better. It’s also important that the teachers keep up to date with industry advancements or any new laws or changes in regulations. Evaluating teachers might be a bit more subjective than other criteria, and perhaps the ideal method is to visit the Bridgeville CA school and speak with the instructors face to face. You can also talk to some of the students completing the training and find out if they are satisfied with the level of instruction and the teacher’s qualification to train them.
How Much Driving Time? Above all else, a great truck driving school will furnish lots of driving time to its students. After all, isn’t that what it’s all about? Driving time is the actual time spent behind the wheel operating a truck. Even though the use of ride-a-longs with other students and simulators are necessary training tools, they are no alternative for real driving. The more instruction that a student receives behind the wheel, the better driver he or she will be. Although driving time varies between schools, a reasonable standard is 32 hours at a minimum. If the school is PTDI certified, it will furnish no less than 44 hours of driving time. Contact the Bridgeville CA schools you are looking at and find out how much driving time they furnish.
Are they Captive or Independent ? You can obtain discounted or even free training from a number of Bridgeville CA trucking schools if you enter into an agreement to be a driver for a particular carrier for a defined time period. This is referred to as contract training, and the schools that offer it are called captives. So instead of maintaining affiliations with numerous trucking lines that they can place their graduates with, captives only work with one company. The benefit is receiving free or less expensive training by giving up the flexibility to initially be a driver wherever you choose. Obviously contract training has the potential to restrict your income prospects when starting out. But for many it may be the best way to receive affordable training. Just be sure to inquire if the schools you are contemplating are independent or captive so that you can make an informed decision.
Offer CDL Testing Onsite? There are several states that will permit third party CDL testing onsite of truck driving schools for its graduates. If onsite testing is available in California, ask if the Bridgeville CA schools you are looking at are DMV certified to offer it. One advantage is that it is more convenient than battling with graduates of competing schools for test times at California testing locations. It is also an indicator that the DMV regards the approved schools to be of a superior quality.
Are the Classes Convenient? As earlier mentioned, truck driving training is just one to two months in length. With such a brief term, it’s important that the Bridgeville CA school you choose offers flexibility for both the curriculum and the scheduling of classes. For example, if you’re having difficulty learning a particular driving maneuver, then the teacher should be willing to commit more time with you until you are proficient. And if you’re still holding a job while going to training, then the class scheduling must be flexible enough to fit in working hours or other commitments.
Is Job Assistance Offered? As soon as you have attained your commercial driver’s license after graduating from trucking school, you will be anxious to start your new career in Bridgeville CA. Confirm that the schools you are looking at have job assistance programs. Ask what their job placement ratio is and what average salary their grads start at. Also, find out which national and local trucking companies their graduates are placed with for hiring. If a school has a poor job placement rate or not many employers recruiting their grads, it might be a sign to search elsewhere.
Is Financial Assistance Given? Truck driving schools are much like colleges and other technical or vocational schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial assistance being available. Ask if the schools you are assessing have a financial assistance department, or at least someone who can help you get through the options and forms that must be completed in Bridgeville CA.
Why Did You Desire to Become a Truck Driver?When prepping to interview for a Trucking job, it's important to reflect on questions you may be asked. Among the questions that recruiters often ask truck driving prospects is "What made you choose trucking as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to learn is not only the private reasons you may have for becoming a trucking operator, but additionally what qualities and abilities you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will probably be asked questions relating exclusively to trucking, along with a significant number of routine interview questions, so you must ready some ideas about how you would like to answer them. Considering there are so many variables that go into choosing a career, you can answer this primary question in a number of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the talents you possess that make you an outstanding truck driver and the leading candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but take down several concepts and talking points that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can help you to formulate your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to impress the recruiter.
Pick the Best Truck Driving School Bridgeville CA
Choosing the right truck driver school is a critical first step to beginning your new vocation as a local or long distance truck driver. The skill sets taught at school will be those that shape a new career behind the wheel. There are a number of options offered and understanding them is vital to a new driver’s success. But first and foremost, you must get the proper training in order to operate a large commercial vehicle in a safe and professional fashion. If you are lacking funds or financing, you might need to think about a captive school. You will pay a lower or in some cases no tuition by agreeing to drive for their contracted carrier. Or you can enroll in an independent school and have the the freedom to drive for the trucking firm of your choosing, or one of several affiliated with the school. It’s your decision. But regardless of how you receive your training, you will in the near future be entering an industry that helps America move as a professional truck driver in Bridgeville CA.
A Bit About Bridgeville California
Bridgeville (formerly Robinsons Ferry and Bridgeport) is an unincorporated community in Humboldt County, California. It is located 12 miles (19 km) north-northeast of Weott, at an elevation of 636 feet (194 m). Bridgeville is 420 km (260 mi) north of San Francisco, with a population of about 25.
Originally called Robinsons Ferry, it was renamed Bridgeport when a bridge was built across the Van Duzen River in 1875. The post office rejected Bridgeport as a name because of another Bridgeport (in Mono County), and the Bridgeville post office opened in 1877. Robinsons Ferry was named in honor of William Slaughter Robinson, local rancher.
The 83-acre (340,000 m2) town became famous in 2002 for being the first in history to be put up for auction on eBay. It was originally sold for $1.77m but the buyer backed out of the deal only for it to be bought by businessman Bruce Krall for $700,000.
Los Angeles-based entertainment manager and college student Daniel Thomas La Paille, 25, purchased the town on August 3, 2006 from Krall. La Paille paid $1.25 million, the money coming from his own entertainment management work as well as from his mother and grandmother.
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