How to Decide on the Right CDL Driving Classes near Ethel Arkansas
Congratulations on your decision to become a truck driver and enroll in a trucking school near Ethel AR. Maybe it has always been your goal to hit the open highway while operating a big ole tractor trailer. Or maybe you have done some analysis and have discovered that an occupation as a truck driver offers excellent income and flexible job prospects. Whatever your reason is, it’s important to receive the proper training by enrolling in the right CDL school in your area. When assessing your options, there are several variables that you’ll need to examine prior to making your ultimate choice. Location will certainly be important, especially if you need to commute from your Ethel residence. The expense will also be important, but choosing a school based solely on price is not the ideal method to ensure you’ll get the proper education. Just remember, your goal 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 purpose in mind, just how do you decide on a truck driving school? The answer to that question is what we are going to address in the rest of this article. But first, we are going to talk a little bit about which CDL license you will ultimately need.
Which Commercial Drivers License Will You Need?
To drive commercial vehicles legally within the USA and Ethel AR, a driver needs to attain a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The 3 classes of licenses that a driver can apply for are Class A, Class B and Class C. Given that the topic of this article is how to select a truck driver school, we will address Class A and B licenses. What differentiates each class of CDL is the kind of vehicle that the driver can operate in addition to 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 required to drive any vehicle that has a GCWR of more than 26,000 lbs., including a towed vehicle of more than 10,000 lbs. A few 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 Commercial Drivers License 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. 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 CDLs may also require endorsements to operate certain types of vehicles, including passenger or school buses. And a Class A license holder, with the proper required endorsements, may operate any vehicle that a Class B licensee is qualified to drive.
How to Evaluate a Truck Driver School
As soon as you have decided which CDL you would like to pursue, you can start the undertaking of researching the Ethel AR trucking schools that you are looking at. As already discussed, location and cost will undoubtedly be your primary concerns. But it can’t be stressed enough that they must not be your only considerations. Other variables, for instance the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are equally or even more important. So following are several more points that you should research while carrying out your due diligence prior to enrolling in, and particularly paying for, your truck driver training.
Are the Schools Certified or Accredited ? Not many truck driving schools in the Ethel AR area are accredited due to the demanding process and cost to the schools. However, certification is more commonplace and is offered by the Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI). A school is not obligated to become certified, but there are a number of advantages. Interested students recognize that the training will be of the highest quality, and that they will get plenty of driving time. For example, PTDI requires 44 hours of actual driving time, not ride-alongs or simulations. So if a school’s course is certified (the course, not the school is certified), students know that the training and curriculum will satisfy the very high benchmarks set by PTDI.
How Long in Business? One clue to help assess the quality of a truck driver school is how long it has been in business. A poorly rated or a fly by night school usually will not stay in business very long, so longevity is a plus. Having said that, even the best of Ethel AR schools had to begin from their first day of training, so use it as one of multiple qualifiers. You can also ask what the school’s history is regarding successful licensing and job placement of its graduates. If a school won’t supply those numbers, search elsewhere. The schools should also have associations with regional and national trucking firms. Having numerous contacts not only confirms an excellent reputation within the profession, but also bolsters their job assistance program for graduates. It also wouldn’t hurt to contact the Arkansas licensing department to make sure that the CDL trucker schools you are considering are in compliance.
How Effective is the Training? As a minimum requirement, the schools must be licensed in Arkansas and employ teachers that are trained and experienced. We will talk more about the teachers in the next 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 getting the personal 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 insists it can train you to drive trucks in a relatively short period of time. Training to be an operator and to drive a tractor trailer skillfully takes time. The majority of Ethel AR schools offer training programs that run from three weeks to as long as 2 months, based on the license class or type of vehicle.
How Experienced are the Instructors? As already mentioned, it’s important that the teachers are trained to teach driving techniques and experienced as both drivers and instructors. Although a number of 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 vital that the instructors stay up to date with industry advancements or any new laws or changes in regulations. Assessing instructors might be a bit more subjective than other criteria, and perhaps the ideal approach is to visit the school and talk to the teachers in person. You can also speak with a few of the students completing the training and ask if they are happy with the quality of instruction and the teacher’s ability to train them.
Adequate Driving Time? Most importantly, a great trucking school will provide lots of driving time to its students. Besides, isn’t that what it’s all about? Driving time is the actual time spent behind the wheel operating a truck. Although the use of ride-a-longs with other students and simulators are important training methods, they are no alternative for actual driving. The more training that a student gets 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 Ethel AR schools you are looking at and find out how much driving time they provide.
Are they Captive or Independent ? You can receive free or discounted training from certain trucking schools if you enter into an agreement to be a driver for a specific carrier for a defined time period. This is what’s known as contract training, and the schools that offer it are called captives. So instead of having affiliations with a wide range of 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 surrendering the flexibility to initially be a driver wherever you have an opportunity. Obviously contract training has the potential to reduce your income prospects when beginning your new career. But for some it may be the best way to get affordable training. Just remember to inquire if the Ethel AR schools you are looking at are captive or independent so that you can make an informed decision.
Is there Onsite CDL Testing? There are some states that will allow 3rd party CDL testing onsite of truck driver schools for its graduates. If onsite testing is available in Arkansas, ask if the schools you are reviewing are DMV certified to provide it. One benefit is that it is more convenient than contending with graduates from other schools for test times at Arkansas testing facilities. It is moreover an indication that the DMV regards the approved schools to be of a higher quality.
Are the Class Times Convenient? As previously mentioned, truck driving training is only about one to two months in length. With such a brief term, it’s important that the Ethel AR school you select offers flexibility for both the scheduling of classes and the curriculum. As an example, if you’re having a hard time learning a particular driving maneuver, then the instructor should be willing to devote more time with you until you are proficient. And if you’re still holding a job while attending training, then the class scheduling must be flexible enough to fit in working hours or other obligations.
Is Job Placement Offered? Once you have obtained your CDL license after graduating from trucking school, you will be impatient to begin your new career. Confirm that the schools you are considering have job placement programs. Find out what their job placement percentage is and what average salary their graduates start at. Also, ask which national and local trucking companies their graduates are placed with for employment. If a school has a low job placement rate or few Ethel AR employers recruiting their graduates, it may be a clue to look elsewhere.
Is Financial Assistance Provided? Truck driver schools are similar to colleges and other Ethel AR area technical or vocational schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial aid being available. Ask if the schools you are assessing have a financial aid department, or at a minimum someone who can help you get through the options and forms that must be completed.
Professional Driver Training Ethel Arkansas
Selecting the ideal truck driving school is an important first step to beginning your new profession as a long distance or local truck driver. The skills taught at school will be those that forge a new career behind the wheel. There are several options available and understanding them is critical to a new driver’s success. You originally came to our website because of your interest in Professional Driver Training and wanting information on the topic Trucking Schools Near Me. However, you must receive the proper training in order to operate a big commercial vehicle in a safe and professional fashion. If you are lacking funds or financing, you may need to consider a captive school. You will pay a reduced or in some cases no tuition by agreeing to drive for their contracted carrier. Or you can select an independent truck driver school and have the the freedom to drive for the trucking company of your choice, or one of many affiliated with the school. It’s your choice. But no matter how you get your training, you will in the near future be joining an industry that helps America move as a professional trucker in Ethel AR.
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Sarvam Thaala Mayam
Sarvam Thaala Mayam (English: Omnipresence of Rhythm), also titled Madras Beats, is a 2019 Tamil-language musical drama film written and directed by Rajiv Menon. The film stars G. V. Prakash Kumar and Aparna Balamurali in the lead roles, with a supporting cast including Nedumudi Venu, Vineeth, Santha Dhananjayan and Kumaravel. The film features music composed by A. R. Rahman and cinematography by Ravi Yadav.
Returning to direction after 19 years, Menon makes a solid comeback with a film that’s relevant, entertaining and inspirational in parts. Sarvam Thaala Mayam works fittingly both as a musical drama. The film is released on 1 February 2019 and was received mostly to positive reviews.
Menon’s film is a musical drama where the worlds of a renowned mridangam player Vembu Iyer (Nedumudi Venu); an expert mridangam maker Johnson (Kumaravel); and the latter's son Peter Johnson (G. V. Prakash Kumar), a crazy Thalapathy Vijay fan, collide. The events that follow form the crux of the story.