CDL Driving Schools Near Me San Bernardino CA

How to Select the Best CDL Training Classes near San Bernardino California

tractor truck in San Bernardino CA Congrats on your decision to become a trucker and enroll in a trucking school near San Bernardino CA. Perhaps it has always been your fantasy to hit the open road while driving a monster tractor trailer. Or possibly you have done some analysis and have found that a career as a truck driver offers excellent income and flexible work opportunities. Regardless of what your reason is, it’s important to receive the proper training by picking the right CDL school in your area. When evaluating your options, there are certain variables that you’ll need to think about before making your ultimate choice. Location will certainly be an issue, particularly if you need to commute from your San Bernardino home. The cost will also be important, but choosing a school based entirely on price is not the ideal means to ensure you’ll obtain the appropriate training. Just remember, your objective is to master the skills and knowledge that will allow you to pass the CDL exams and become a professional truck driver. So keeping that objective in mind, just how do you select a truck driving school? That is what we are going to discuss in the rest of this article. But first, we are going to talk a little bit about which CDL license you will eventually need.

Which CDL Will You Require?

San Bernardino CA long haul tractor trailerTo drive commercial vehicles legally within the USA and San Bernardino CA, an operator needs to obtain a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The three license classes that one can apply for are Class A, Class B and Class C. Given that the subject of this article is how to choose a truck driving school, we will focus on 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 explanations of the 2 classes.

Class A CDL. A Class A CDL is required 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 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 drive single vehicles having a GVWR of more than 26,000 lbs., or a GCWR of greater than 26,000 lbs. including a towed vehicle weighing up to 10,000 lbs. Some 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 kinds of vehicles, for instance passenger or school buses. And a Class A licensee, with the appropriate required endorsements, may operate any vehicle that a Class B license holder is authorized to operate.

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How to Assess a Truck Driving School

San Bernardino CA truck driving schoolOnce you have decided which Commercial Drivers License you want to obtain, you can start the process of assessing the San Bernardino CA truck driving schools that you are looking at. As previously mentioned, cost and location will no doubt be your initial concerns. But it can’t be emphasized enough that they should not be your only concerns. Other variables, for example the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are similarly or even more important. So below are a few more things that you should research while conducting your due diligence prior to enrolling in, and particularly paying for, your truck driving training.

Are the Schools Accredited or Certified ? Not many trucking schools in the San Bernardino CA area are accredited due to the demanding process and expense 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 several advantages. Potential students recognize that the training will be of the highest standard, and that they will receive an ample amount of driving time. As an example, PTDI requires 44 hours of real 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 training and curriculum will satisfy the very high benchmarks 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 poorly rated 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 best of San Bernardino CA schools had to start from their opening day of training, so use it as one of multiple qualifications. You can also find out what the school’s track record is concerning successful licensing and employment of its graduates. If a school won’t supply those numbers, look elsewhere. The schools should also maintain associations with local and national trucking companies. Having numerous contacts not only confirms an excellent reputation within the industry, but also boosts their job assistance program for students. It also wouldn’t be a bad idea to contact the California licensing department to make sure that the CDL trucking schools you are reviewing are in good standing.

How Good is the Training? As a minimum requirement, the schools should be licensed in California and employ instructors that are experienced and trained. We will discuss more about the instructors in the next segment. 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 individual 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 claims it can teach you to drive trucks in a relatively short period of time. Learning to be an operator and to drive a tractor trailer skillfully requires time. Most San Bernardino CA schools offer training courses that range from 3 weeks to as long as two months, depending on the class of license or kind of vehicle.

How Experienced are the Trainers? As earlier stated, it’s essential that the instructors are trained to teach driving techniques and experienced as both instructors and drivers. Even though several states have minimum driving time criteria to qualify as an instructor, the more successful driving experience a teacher has the better. It’s also vital that the instructors stay current with industry developments or any new regulations or changes in existing laws. Assessing teachers may be a little more intuitive than other criteria, and perhaps the best approach is to check out the school and talk to the instructors face to face. You can also talk to some of the students completing the training and find out if they are happy with the level of instruction and the teacher’s ability to train them.

Plenty of Driving Time? Most importantly, a great trucking school will provide ample 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 simulators and ride-a-longs with other students are important training methods, they are no alternative for real driving. The more training that a student gets behind the wheel, the better driver he or she will be. Although driving time fluctuates among schools, a reasonable benchmark is 32 hours at a minimum. If the school is PTDI certified, it will furnish at least 44 hours of driving time. Get in touch with the San Bernardino CA schools you are researching and ask how much driving time they furnish.

Are they Captive or Independent ? It’s possible to get discounted or even free training from certain trucking schools if you enter into an agreement to drive for a specific carrier for a defined time period. This is referred to as contract training, and the schools that offer it are called captives. So rather than having associations with many different trucking lines that they can refer their students to, captives only refer to one company. The tradeoff is receiving less expensive or even free training by surrendering the freedom to initially work wherever you have an opportunity. Naturally contract training has the potential to limit your income opportunities when beginning your new career. But for many it may be the ideal way to get affordable training. Just remember to find out if the San Bernardino CA schools you are looking at are captive or independent so that you can make an informed decision.

Is there Onsite CDL Testing? There are several states that will permit third party CDL testing onsite of truck driving schools for its students. If onsite testing is allowed in California, find out if the schools you are looking at are DMV certified to offer it. One advantage is that it is more accommodating than battling with graduates from other schools for test times at California testing centers. It is moreover an indication that the DMV deems the authorized schools to be of a superior quality.

Are the Classes Flexible? As formerly noted, truck driver training is just 1 to 2 months in length. With such a brief duration, it’s essential that the San Bernardino CA school you choose offers flexibility for both the curriculum and the scheduling of classes. For example, if you’re having a hard time learning a particular driving maneuver, then the teacher should be prepared to devote more time with you until you are proficient. And if you’re still employed while attending training, then the class scheduling must be flexible enough to accommodate working hours or other obligations.

Is Job Placement Provided? Once you have received your CDL license after graduating from truck driver school, you will be impatient to begin your new career. Verify that the schools you are looking at have job assistance programs. Ask what their job placement rate is and what average salary their graduates start at. Also, ask which national and local trucking firms their graduates are placed with for employment. If a school has a lower job placement rate or not many San Bernardino CA employers hiring their graduates, it might be a sign to look elsewhere.

Is Financial Assistance Provided? Truck driving schools are comparable to colleges and other San Bernardino CA area vocational or trade schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial assistance being offered. 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 completed.

CDL Driving Schools Near Me San Bernardino California

San Bernardino CA long haul truckSelecting the right trucking school is a critical first step to launching your new profession as a local or long distance truck driver. The skills taught at school will be those that shape a new career behind the wheel. There are several options available and understanding them is vital if you are going to succeed as an operator.  You originally came to our website because of your interest in CDL Driving Schools Near Me and wanting information on the topic CDL Training Requirements.  However, you must get the appropriate training in order to operate a large commercial vehicle in a professional and safe fashion. If you are short on cash or financing, you may want to think about 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 enroll in an independent trucker school and have the the freedom to drive for the trucking company of your choosing, or one of several affiliated with the school. It’s your choice. But no matter how you get your training, you will in the near future be part of a profession that helps America move as a professional truck driver in San Bernardino CA.

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    San Bernardino, California

    San Bernardino (/ˌsæn ˌbɜːrnəˈdiːnoʊ/) is a city located in the Riverside–San Bernardino metropolitan area (sometimes called the "Inland Empire") and that serves as the county seat of San Bernardino County, California, United States. As one of the Inland Empire's anchor cities, San Bernardino spans 81 square miles (210 km2) on the floor of the San Bernardino Valley and as of 2017 has a population of 216,995.[9][8] San Bernardino is the 17th-largest city in California and the 102nd-largest city in the United States. San Bernardino is home to numerous diplomatic missions for the Inland Empire, being one of four cities in California with numerous consulates (the other three being Los Angeles, San Diego, and the greater metropolitan San Francisco Bay Area including San Jose and San Francisco). The governments of Guatemala and Mexico have also established their consulates in the downtown area of the city.[10]

    California State University, San Bernardino is located in the northwestern part of the city. The university also hosts the Coussoulis Arena. Other attractions in San Bernardino include ASU Fox Theatre,[11] the McDonald's Museum, which is located on the original site of the world's first McDonald's, California Theatre, the San Bernardino Mountains, and San Manuel Amphitheater, the largest outdoor amphitheater in the United States. In addition, the city is home to the Inland Empire 66ers baseball team; they play their home games at San Manuel Stadium in downtown San Bernardino.[12]

    In August 2012, San Bernardino became the largest city to file for protection under Chapter 9 of the U.S. Bankruptcy code;[13][14] this has been superseded by Detroit's filing in July 2013. San Bernardino's case was filed on August 1.[15][16] On December 2, 2015, a terrorist attack left 14 people dead and 22 seriously injured.

     

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