How to Find the Right Truck Driver Classes near Sardis Alabama
Congrats on your decision to become a truck driver and enroll in a CDL school near Sardis AL. Maybe it has always been your dream to hit the open highway while operating a monster tractor trailer. Or perhaps you have done some research and have found that an occupation as a truck driver offers excellent income and flexible work prospects. Regardless of what your reason is, it’s imperative to receive the proper training by choosing the right CDL school in your area. When reviewing your options, there are various factors that you’ll want to think about before making your final choice. Location will undoubtedly be important, especially if you have to commute from your Sardis residence. The cost will also be important, but selecting a school based exclusively on price is not the best method to guarantee you’ll receive the proper education. Just remember, your objective is to master the knowledge and skills that will enable 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? The answer to that question is what we are going to cover in the balance of this article. But first, we are going to discuss a little bit about which commercial driver’s license you will eventually need.
Which CDL Will You Require?
To drive commercial vehicles lawfully within the USA and Sardis AL, an operator needs to get a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The 3 license classes that one can apply for are Class A, Class B and Class C. Since the topic of this article is how to choose a truck driver school, we will discuss Class A and Class B licenses. What differentiates each class of CDL is the kind of vehicle that the driver can operate together with the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) or GCWR (Gross Combination Weight Rating). Following are short summaries for the 2 classes.
Class A CDL. A Class A Commercial Drivers License is needed to drive any vehicle that has a GCWR of more than 26,000 lbs., including a towed vehicle of greater than 10,000 lbs. Some of the vehicles that drivers may be able to operate 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 CDL 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. Some of the vehicles that drivers may be qualified to operate 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 may also need endorsements to operate certain kinds of vehicles, for instance passenger or school buses. And a Class A license holder, with the proper needed endorsements, may operate any vehicle that a Class B licensee is authorized to operate.
How to Research a Truck Driving School
Once you have decided which Commercial Drivers License you want to obtain, you can begin the process of evaluating the Sardis AL truck driving schools that you are considering. As earlier discussed, location and cost will no doubt be your initial concerns. But it can’t be emphasized enough that they should not be your only concerns. Other factors, for example the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are equally or even more important. So following are several additional factors that you should research while carrying out your due diligence prior to selecting, and especially paying for, your truck driving training.
Are the Schools Accredited or Certified ? Not many trucking schools in the Sardis AL area are accredited because of the demanding process and cost to the schools. On the other hand, 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 several advantages. Prospective students recognize that the training will be of the highest caliber, and that they will receive an ample amount of driving time. As an example, PTDI calls for 44 hours of actual driving time, not simulations or ride-alongs. So if a school’s program is certified (the program, not the school is certified), students know that the curriculum and training will satisfy the very high standards set by PTDI.
How Long in Operation? One indicator to help evaluate the quality of a truck driver school is how long it has been in operation. A negatively rated or a fly by night school normally will not be in business very long, so longevity is a plus. On the other hand, even the top Sardis AL schools had to begin from their opening day of training, so use it as one of several qualifiers. You can also find out what the school’s track record is relating to successful licensing and job placement of its graduating students. If a school won’t supply those stats, search elsewhere. The schools should also maintain associations with local and national trucking firms. Having a large number of contacts not only confirms a superior reputation within the industry, but also bolsters their job assistance program for students. It also wouldn’t be a bad idea to contact the Alabama licensing authority to confirm that the CDL trucking schools you are reviewing are in compliance.
How Effective is the Training? At a minimum, the schools should be licensed in Alabama and employ teachers that are experienced and trained. We will cover more about the teachers in the following segment. In addition, the student to instructor ratio should be no greater than 4 to 1. If it’s any higher, then students will not be obtaining the individual instruction they will need. This is especially true concerning the one-on-one instruction for behind the wheel training. And be critical of any school that professes it can teach you to drive trucks in a comparatively short time frame. Training to be a truck driver and to drive a tractor trailer professionally takes time. The majority of Sardis AL schools provide training programs that run from three weeks to as long as two months, depending on the license class or kind of vehicle.
How Good are the Instructors? As earlier stated, it’s essential that the instructors are qualified to teach driving techniques and experienced as both drivers and instructors. Although a number of states have minimum driving time prerequisites to be certified as a teacher, the more professional driving experience an instructor has the better. It’s also crucial that the teachers keep current with industry advancements or any new regulations or changes in existing laws. Evaluating instructors may be a bit more subjective than other standards, and possibly the ideal approach is to visit the school and talk to the teachers face to face. You can also talk to a few of the students going through the training and ask if they are satisfied with the level of instruction and the teacher’s ability to train them.
Enough Driving Time? Most importantly, a good truck driver school will provide ample driving time to its students. Besides, isn’t that what it’s all about? Driving time is the actual time spent behind the wheel driving a truck. Although the use of ride-a-longs with other students and simulators are necessary training methods, they are no alternative for real driving. The more training that a student receives behind the wheel, the better driver he or she will be. And even though driving time can vary between schools, a reasonable benchmark is 32 hours at a minimum. If the school is PTDI certified, it will provide a minimum of 44 hours of driving time. Get in touch with the Sardis AL schools you are researching and ask how much driving time they provide.
Are they Independent or Captive ? It’s possible to receive free or discounted training from certain truck driving schools if you make a commitment to be a driver for a specific carrier for a defined amount of time. This is referred to as contract training, and the schools that provide it are called captives. So instead of maintaining affiliations with a wide range of trucking lines that they can place their graduates with, captives only work with one company. The benefit is receiving less expensive or even free training by giving up the flexibility to initially be a driver wherever you have an opportunity. Naturally contract training has the potential to limit your income prospects when beginning your new career. But for some it may be the only way to get affordable training. Just remember to find out if the Sardis AL schools you are looking at are independent or captive so that you can make an informed decision.
Offer CDL Testing Onsite? There are a number of states that will permit third party CDL testing onsite of truck driver schools for its students. If onsite testing is permitted in Alabama, find out if the schools you are looking at are DMV certified to provide it. One benefit is that it is more accommodating than battling with graduates from competing schools for test times at Alabama testing locations. It is moreover an indication that the DMV views the authorized schools to be of a superior quality.
Are the Classes Flexible? As previously noted, CDL training is just 1 to 2 months long. With such a brief term, it’s imperative that the Sardis AL school you choose provides flexibility for both the scheduling of classes and the curriculum. For example, if you’re having a hard time learning a certain driving maneuver, then the instructor should be willing to devote more time with you until you have it mastered. And if you’re still working while going to training, then the class scheduling needs to be flexible enough to fit in working hours or other responsibilities.
Is Job Assistance Offered? Once you have attained your CDL license after graduating from truck driving school, you will be anxious to start your new profession. Make sure that the schools you are looking at have job placement programs. Ask what their job placement percentage is and what average salary their grads start at. Also, ask which national and local trucking companies their graduates are referred to for hiring. If a school has a lower job placement rate or few Sardis AL employers hiring their graduates, it might be a clue to look elsewhere.
Is Financial Assistance Available? Trucking schools are similar to colleges and other Sardis AL area technical or vocational schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial assistance being available. Find out if the schools you are assessing have a financial aid department, or at a minimum someone who can help you understand the options and forms that must be submitted.
Tractor Trailer School Sardis Alabama
Selecting the appropriate trucking school is an important first step to launching your new profession as a local or long distance truck driver. The skills taught at school will be those that mold a new career behind the wheel. There are a number of options available and understanding them is critical to a new driver’s success. You originally came to our website because of your interest in Tractor Trailer School and wanting information on the topic Truck Driving Training Programs. But first and foremost, you must receive the appropriate training in order to operate a large commercial vehicle in a professional and safe manner. If you are lacking cash or financing, you may need to consider a captive school. You will pay a lower or even no tuition in exchange for driving for their contracted carrier. Or you can choose an independent truck driver school and have the option of driving for the trucking firm of your choice, or one of several affiliated with the school. It’s your choice. But no matter how you get your training, you will soon be part of a profession that helps America move as a professional truck driver in Sardis AL.
Truck On in These Other Alabama Locations
Sardis (/ˈsɑːrdɪs/) or Sardes (/ˈsɑːrdiːz/; Lydian: ????? Sfard; Ancient Greek: Σάρδεις Sardeis; Old Persian: Sparda; Biblical Hebrew: ספרד Sfarad) was an ancient city at the location of modern Sart (Sartmahmut before 19 October 2005) in Turkey's Manisa Province. Sardis was the capital of the ancient kingdom of Lydia, one of the important cities of the Persian Empire, the seat of a proconsul under the Roman Empire, and the metropolis of the province Lydia in later Roman and Byzantine times. As one of the seven churches of Asia, it was addressed by John, the author of the Book of Revelation in the New Testament, in terms which seem to imply that its church members did not finish what they started, that they were about image and not substance. Its importance was due first to its military strength, secondly to its situation on an important highway leading from the interior to the Aegean coast, and thirdly to its commanding the wide and fertile plain of the Hermus.
Sardis was situated in the middle of Hermus valley, at the foot of Mount Tmolus, a steep and lofty spur which formed the citadel. It was about 4 kilometres (2.5 mi) south of the Hermus. Today, the site is located by the present day village of Sart, near Salihli in the Manisa province of Turkey, close to the Ankara - İzmir highway (approximately 72 kilometres (45 mi) from İzmir). The part of remains including the bath-gymnasium complex, synagogue and Byzantine shops is open to visitors year-round.
The Greek historian and father of history, Herodotus, notes that the city was founded by the sons of Hercules, the Heraclides. According to Herodotus, the Heraclides ruled for five hundred and five years beginning with Agron, 1220 BCE, and ending with Candaules, 716 BCE. They were followed by the Mermnades, which began with Gyges, 716 BCE, and ended with Croesus, 546 BCE. The earliest reference to Sardis is in The Persians of Aeschylus (472 BCE); in the Iliad, the name “Hyde” seems to be given to the city of the Maeonian (i.e. Lydian) chiefs and in later times Hyde was said to be the older name of Sardis, or the name of its citadel.