How to Find the Best CDL Driving School near Joseph City Arizona
Congrats on your decision to become a trucker and enroll in a trucking school near Joseph City AZ. Perhaps it has always been your dream to hit the open road while operating a monster tractor trailer. Or perhaps you have conducted some analysis and have discovered that a career as a truck driver provides excellent income and flexible work opportunities. No matter what your reason is, it’s imperative to get the proper training by picking the right CDL school in your area. When evaluating your options, there are various factors that you’ll want to think about before making your final selection. Location will no doubt be an issue, particularly if you have to commute from your Joseph City residence. The cost will also be important, but selecting a school based solely on price is not the ideal method to guarantee you’ll receive the right training. Just remember, your objective is to learn the knowledge and skills that will enable you to pass the CDL exams and become a professional truck driver. So keeping that purpose in mind, just how do you decide on a truck driving school? That is what we are going to address in the balance of this article. But first, we are going to discuss a little bit about which commercial driver’s license you will ultimately need.
Which Commercial Drivers License Will You Need?
To drive commercial vehicles lawfully within the USA and Joseph City AZ, an operator must get a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The three classes of licenses that one can apply for are Class A, Class B and Class C. Since the subject of this article is how to choose a truck driving school, we will address Class A and B licenses. What distinguishes each class of CDL is the type of vehicle that the driver can operate together with the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) or GCWR (Gross Combination Weight Rating). Following are brief summaries for the 2 classes.
Class A CDL. A Class A Commercial Drivers License is required to operate any vehicle that has a GCWR of greater than 26,000 lbs., including a towed vehicle of more than 10,000 lbs. Some 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 CDL is required to operate single vehicles having a GVWR of greater 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 CDLs may also need endorsements to drive certain kinds of vehicles, for example passenger or school buses. And a Class A licensee, with the proper required endorsements, can operate any vehicle that a Class B licensee is qualified to drive.
How to Assess a Truck Driving School
When you have determined which Commercial Drivers License you want to obtain, you can begin the undertaking of evaluating the Joseph City AZ trucking schools that you are considering. As already discussed, cost and location will certainly be your initial concerns. But it can’t be emphasized enough that they should not be your sole considerations. Other variables, for instance the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are equally or even more important. So below are several additional things that you need to research while performing your due diligence prior to choosing, and particularly paying for, your truck driving training.
Are the Schools Accredited or Certified ? Not many truck driver schools in the Joseph City AZ area are accredited because of the rigorous process and expense to the schools. However, certification is more common and is provided by the Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI). A school is not required to become certified, but there are a number of advantages. Potential students know that the training will be of the highest quality, and that they will be given an ample amount of driving time. For example, PTDI requires 44 hours of actual driving time, not ride-alongs or simulations. So if a school’s program is certified (the program, not the school is certified), students know that the training and curriculum will measure up to the very high benchmarks set by PTDI.
How Long in Business? One clue to help measure the quality of a truck driving school is how long it has been in business. A poorly ranked or a fly by night school typically will not stay in business very long, so longevity is a plus. On the other hand, even the top Joseph City AZ schools had to start from their opening day of training, so use it as one of several qualifiers. You can also learn what the school’s track record is concerning successful licensing and job placement of its graduating students. If a school won’t provide those numbers, look elsewhere. The schools should additionally maintain associations with regional and national trucking firms. Having a large number of contacts not only affirms a quality reputation within the industry, but also bolsters their job placement program for graduates. It also wouldn’t be a bad idea to get in touch with the Arizona licensing department to confirm that the CDL trucking schools you are reviewing are in good standing.
How Good is the Training? At a minimum, the schools should be licensed in Arizona and hire instructors that are trained and experienced. We will discuss more about the teachers in the following section. In addition, the student to instructor proportion should be no greater than 4 to 1. If it’s any greater, then students will not be obtaining the personal instruction they will need. This is especially true regarding the one-on-one instruction for behind the wheel training. And look out for any school that insists 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 skillfully takes time. Most Joseph City AZ schools provide training programs that range from three weeks to as long as two months, depending on the class of license or kind of vehicle.
How Good are the Teachers? As earlier mentioned, it’s essential that the teachers are trained to teach driving methods and experienced as both instructors and drivers. Although a number of states have minimum driving time criteria to qualify as a teacher, the more successful driving experience a teacher has the better. It’s also vital that the teachers keep up to date with industry developments or any new regulations or changes in existing laws. Assessing teachers may be a bit more subjective than other criteria, and perhaps the ideal method is to pay a visit to the school and talk to the instructors in person. You can also speak with some of the students completing the training and find out if they are happy with the quality of instruction and the teacher’s ability to train them.
Sufficient Driving Time? Most importantly, a great truck driving school will provide lots of driving time to its students. Besides, isn’t that what it’s all about? Driving time is the real time spent behind the wheel driving a truck. While the use of ride-a-longs with other students and simulators are essential training tools, they are no substitute for real driving. The more instruction that a student gets behind the wheel, the better driver he or she will be. Although driving time fluctuates between schools, a good standard is 32 hours at a minimum. If the school is PTDI certified, it will provide no less than 44 hours of driving time. Contact the Joseph City AZ schools you are researching and ask how much driving time they furnish.
Are they Independent or Captive ? It’s possible to get free or discounted training from some 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 offer it are called captives. So rather than maintaining relationships with many different trucking lines that they can refer their students to, captives only work with one company. The tradeoff is receiving less expensive or even free training by giving up the freedom to initially work wherever you choose. Naturally contract training has the potential to restrict your income opportunities when beginning your new career. But for many it may be the only way to obtain affordable training. Just make sure to ask if the Joseph City AZ schools you are contemplating are independent or captive so that you can make an informed decision.
Is there CDL Testing Onsite? There are several states that will allow third party CDL testing onsite of trucking schools for its graduates. If onsite testing is allowed in Arizona, ask if the schools you are reviewing are DMV certified to offer it. One benefit is that it is more accommodating than battling with graduates from competing schools for test times at Arizona testing centers. It is also an indication that the DMV regards the approved schools to be of a superior quality.
Are the Classes Accessible? As formerly mentioned, truck driving training is only about one to two months long. With such a short term, it’s important that the Joseph City AZ school you select provides flexibility for both the scheduling of classes and the curriculum. As an example, if you’re having difficulty learning a certain driving maneuver, then the teacher should be willing to dedicate more time with you until you have it mastered. And if you’re still employed while going to training, then the class scheduling must be flexible enough to accommodate working hours or other commitments.
Is Job Placement Provided? As soon as you have obtained your commercial driver’s license after graduating from trucking school, you will be eager to begin your new career. Confirm that the schools you are looking at have job placement programs. Find out what their job placement ratio is and what average salary their graduates start at. Also, find out which local and national trucking companies their graduates are referred to for employment. If a school has a low job placement rate or few Joseph City AZ employers recruiting their grads, it might be a clue to search elsewhere.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Trucking schools are much like colleges and other Joseph City AZ area vocational or trade schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial assistance being available. Find out if the schools you are examining have a financial assistance department, or at least someone who can help you navigate the options and forms that need to be completed.
Truck Driver Classes Joseph City Arizona
Picking the right trucking school is an important first step to starting your new vocation as a local or long distance truck driver. The skills taught at school will be those that forge a new career behind the wheel. There are a number of options available and understanding them is vital to a new driver’s success. You originally came to our website because of your interest in Truck Driver Classes and wanting information on the topic CDL Truck Driver Training. However, you must get the appropriate training in order to operate a big commercial vehicle in a professional and safe manner. If you are lacking funds or financing, you might need to look into a captive school. You will pay a lower or even no tuition by agreeing to drive for their contracted carrier. Or you can choose an independent CDL 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 regardless of how you receive your training, you will in the near future be part of a profession that helps America move as a professional trucker in Joseph City AZ.
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Joseph City, Arizona
Joseph City (elevation 5,000 ft) is an unincorporated community located in Navajo County, Arizona, United States. It is located on Interstate 40 about eighty miles east of Flagstaff and about thirty-five miles west of Petrified Forest National Park. In 2010, there were 1,386 inhabitants.
Joseph City was settled in 1876 by colonists from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This band of 73 pioneers was led by Captain William C. Allen. They traveled to the Little Colorado River basin of Arizona. Joseph City was one of four Little Colorado River colonies. The other colonies were Brigham City, Sunset, and Obed. Joseph City is the only remaining colony.
The hardest trial for the new colonists was trying to get water for their crops. This meant that they had to try to tame the Little Colorado River. This was difficult due to the flooding season that would destroy dams along the river. The first dam was built in 1876, shortly after the colonists arrived in the area. For the next eighteen years the colonists built ten more dams. The eleventh dam was built in 1894. This dam lasted for twenty-nine years. In 1923, the eleventh dam was destroyed and the colonists were forced to build a new dam. This dam still currently stands and directs water to the inhabitants still in the city.