How to Pick the Best Truck Driver Classes near New River Arizona
Congrats on your decision to become a trucker and enroll in a truck driving school near New River AZ. Perhaps it has always been your dream to hit the open highway while driving a huge tractor trailer. Or maybe you have conducted some research and have found that a career as a truck driver offers good pay and flexible job prospects. No matter what your reason is, it’s essential to receive the appropriate training by selecting the right CDL school in your area. When evaluating your options, there are various variables that you’ll need to examine before making your ultimate choice. Location will certainly be important, particularly if you need to commute from your New River residence. The expense will also be important, but picking a school based entirely on price is not the best means to make sure you’ll get the appropriate training. Don’t forget, your goal is to learn the skills and knowledge that will enable you to pass the CDL examinations and become a qualified truck driver. So keeping that target in mind, just how do you choose a truck driving school? That is what we are going to address in the balance of this article. But first, we are going to talk a little bit about which CDL license you will ultimately need.
Which CDL Will You Require?
In order to drive commercial vehicles legally within the United States and New River AZ, an operator needs to attain a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The 3 classes of licenses that one can qualify for are Class A, Class B and Class C. Since the topic of this article is how to select a truck driver school, we will highlight 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 explanations for the two classes.
Class A CDL. A Class A CDL is needed to operate any vehicle that has a GCWR of more than 26,000 lbs., including a towed vehicle of greater 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 CDL is needed to operate single vehicles having a GVWR of greater than 26,000 lbs., or a GCWR of greater 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 might also need endorsements to drive certain types of vehicles, such as school or passenger buses. And a Class A licensee, with the appropriate required endorsements, may operate any vehicle that a Class B license holder is authorized to drive.
How to Evaluate a Trucking School
Once you have determined which Commercial Drivers License you would like to obtain, you can start the undertaking of researching the New River AZ truck driving schools that you are considering. As already discussed, location and cost will certainly be your primary concerns. But it can’t be stressed enough that they must not be your only concerns. Other variables, for example the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are similarly if not more important. So below are several additional points that you need to research while conducting your due diligence before choosing, and especially paying for, your truck driving training.
Are the Schools Certified or Accredited ? Very few truck driver schools in the New River AZ area are accredited due to the stringent process and expense to the schools. On the other hand, certification is more common and is offered by the Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI). A school is not obligated to become certified, but there are several advantages. Potential students recognize that the training will be of the highest caliber, and that they will get plenty of driving time. As an example, PTDI requires 44 hours of actual 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 training and curriculum will fulfill the very high standards set by PTDI.
How Long in Operation? One clue to help assess the quality of a truck driving school is how long it has been in operation. A negatively rated or a fly by night school usually will not be in business very long, so longevity is a plus. However, even the best of New River AZ schools had to start from their first day of training, so consider it as one of several qualifiers. You can also learn what the school’s history is relating to successful licensing and employment of its graduating students. If a school won’t provide those stats, search elsewhere. The schools should also have associations with local and national trucking companies. Having numerous contacts not only points to a superior reputation within the trade, but also bolsters their job placement program for students. 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 researching are in good standing.
How Good is the Training? As a minimum requirement, the schools must be licensed in Arizona and employ teachers that are experienced and trained. We will discuss more about the instructors in the following segment. In addition, the student to instructor ratio should not be higher than 4 to 1. If it’s any higher, then students will not be getting the personalized instruction they will need. This is particularly true concerning the one-on-one instruction for behind the wheel training. And look out for any school that claims it can teach you to drive trucks in a relatively short time period. Learning to be a truck driver and to drive a tractor trailer skillfully takes time. Most New River AZ schools provide training courses that run from 3 weeks to as long as 2 months, based on the license class or kind of vehicle.
How Experienced are the Instructors? As already mentioned, it’s important 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 a teacher has the better. It’s also crucial that the teachers keep current with industry developments or any new regulations or changes in existing laws. Evaluating instructors might be a bit more subjective than other standards, and perhaps the best method is to pay a visit to the school and speak with the teachers in person. You can also talk to a few of the students going through the training and find out if they are satisfied with the quality of instruction and the teacher’s ability to train them.
Adequate Driving Time? Above all else, a good truck driver school will furnish ample 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 driving a truck. Even though the use of simulators and ride-a-longs with other students are essential training tools, they are no substitute for real driving. The more instruction that a student receives behind the wheel, the better driver she or he will be. And even though driving time can vary among schools, a good standard is a minimum of 32 hours. If the school is PTDI certified, it will furnish a minimum of 44 hours of driving time. Get in touch with the New River AZ schools you are considering and ask how much driving time they furnish.
Are they Independent or Captive ? It’s possible to obtain discounted or even free training from a number of truck driving schools if you enter into an agreement to be a driver for a specified carrier for a defined time period. This is referred to as contract training, and the schools that provide it are called captives. So instead of maintaining relationships with many different trucking lines that they can refer their students to, captives only work with one company. The benefit is receiving free or less expensive training by giving up the freedom to initially be a driver wherever you have an opportunity. Obviously contract training has the potential to limit your income opportunities when beginning your new career. But for many it may be the best way to obtain affordable training. Just remember to find out if the New River AZ schools you are considering are independent or captive so that you can make an informed decision.
Is there Onsite CDL Testing? There are a number of states that will allow third party CDL testing onsite of truck driving schools for its graduates. If onsite testing is available in Arizona, find out if the schools you are reviewing are DMV certified to provide it. One benefit is that it is more convenient than contending with graduates of competing schools for test times at Arizona testing centers. It is moreover an indication that the DMV regards the approved schools to be of a higher quality.
Are the Class Times Flexible? As formerly noted, truck driver training is just 1 to 2 months in length. With such a brief term, it’s imperative that the New River AZ school you choose provides flexibility for both the curriculum and the scheduling of classes. For example, if you’re having difficulty learning a particular driving maneuver, then the instructor should be prepared to commit more time with you until you have it mastered. And if you’re still working while attending training, then the class scheduling must be flexible enough to accommodate working hours or other obligations.
Is Job Placement Provided? The moment you have acquired your CDL license after graduating from truck driving school, you will be eager to begin your new career. Verify that the schools you are contemplating have job placement programs. Find out what their job placement rate 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 not many New River AZ employers hiring their grads, it might be a clue to search elsewhere.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Truck driver schools are much like colleges and other New River AZ area trade or technical schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial assistance being offered. Find out if the schools you are examining have a financial assistance department, or at a minimum someone who can help you understand the options and forms that must be submitted.
Truck Driving School Near Me New River Arizona
Selecting the appropriate trucking school is an important first step to beginning your new vocation as a long distance or local truck driver. The skill sets that you will learn at school will be those that shape a new career behind the wheel. There are many options available and understanding them is critical to a new driver’s success. You originally came to our website because of your interest in Truck Driving School Near Me and wanting information on the topic Trucking Classes. But first and foremost, you must receive the appropriate training in order to operate a big commercial vehicle in a professional and safe manner. If you are short on funds or financing, you may want 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 select an independent CDL school and have the option of driving for the trucking company 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 trucker in New River AZ.
Truck On in These Other Arizona Locations
New River, Arizona
New River is named after the seasonal wash of the same name, part of the Agua Fria River system which drains into the Salt River. It was founded by Lord Darrell Duppa in 1868 as a stagecoach stop. For many years it was the terminus of the old Black Canyon Highway (now Interstate 17). The pavement ended in New River and continued as a dirt road to the city of Prescott.
New River is located at 33°52′9″N 112°5′9″W / 33.86917°N 112.08583°W / 33.86917; -112.08583 (33.869149, −112.085759). It is bordered by the Tonto National Forest to the north, Cave Creek to the east, Phoenix to the south, and Anthem to the west. The CDP includes the area known as Desert Hills.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 70.8 square miles (183 km2), of which, 70.8 square miles (183 km2) of it is land and 0.01% is water. It includes both Daisy Mountain and Gavilan Peak.
Business Results 1 - 10 of 18