Bus Driving School Santa Clarita CA

How to Pick the Best CDL Driving School near Santa Clarita California

tractor truck in Santa Clarita CA Congratulations on your decision to become a truck driver and enroll in a truck driving school near Santa Clarita CA. Maybe it has always been your ambition to hit the open road while driving a big ole tractor trailer. Or perhaps you have done some analysis and have discovered that a career as a truck driver provides good pay and flexible job opportunities. Regardless of what your reason is, it’s essential to obtain the appropriate training by picking the right CDL school in your area. When assessing your options, there are several variables that you’ll need to think about before making your ultimate selection. Location will certainly be an issue, particularly if you have to commute from your Santa Clarita residence. The expense will also be important, but picking a school based entirely on price is not the best method to ensure you’ll receive the proper education. Don’t forget, your objective is to learn the knowledge and skills that will allow you to pass the CDL exams and become a professional truck driver. So keeping that purpose in mind, just how do you pick 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 commercial driver’s license you will eventually need.

Which CDL Will You Require?

Santa Clarita CA long haul tractor trailerTo drive commercial vehicles legally within the USA and Santa Clarita CA, an operator needs to get a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The 3 license classes that one can qualify 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 discuss Class A and B licenses. What differentiates each class of CDL is the type of vehicle that the driver can operate in addition to the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) or GCWR (Gross Combination Weight Rating). Below are brief explanations for the 2 classes.

Class A CDL. A Class A CDL is needed to drive any vehicle that has a GCWR of greater 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 Commercial Drivers License is needed to drive 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 may also need endorsements to operate certain types of vehicles, for example school or passenger buses. And a Class A license holder, with the appropriate needed endorsements, may drive any vehicle that a Class B licensee is qualified to operate.

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How to Assess a Truck Driving School

Santa Clarita CA truck driving schoolAfter you have determined which Commercial Drivers License you want to pursue, you can start the undertaking of evaluating the Santa Clarita CA truck driving schools that you are looking at. As earlier mentioned, cost and location will undoubtedly be your primary considerations. But it can’t be stressed enough that they must not be your only considerations. Other factors, including the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are similarly or even more important. So below are some more factors that you should research while performing your due diligence before choosing, and especially paying for, your truck driver training.

Are the Schools Accredited or Certified ? Very few truck driving schools in the Santa Clarita CA area are accredited because of the demanding process and cost 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 certain advantages. Prospective students know that the training will be of the highest standard, and that they will get plenty of driving time. For example, PTDI calls for 44 hours of real 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 satisfy the very high standards set by PTDI.

How Long in Operation? One clue to help evaluate 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 be in business very long, so longevity is a plus. On the other hand, even the top Santa Clarita CA schools had to begin from their opening day of training, so consider it as one of several qualifications. You can also find out what the school’s history is relating to successful licensing and job placement of its graduating students. If a school won’t provide those stats, search elsewhere. The schools should additionally have associations with local and national trucking companies. Having a large number of contacts not only points to an excellent reputation within the trade, but also bolsters their job assistance program for graduates. It also wouldn’t hurt to contact the California licensing authority to confirm that the CDL trucker schools you are considering are in good standing.

How Effective is the Training? As a minimum requirement, the schools must be licensed in California and hire teachers that are experienced and trained. We will discuss more about the instructors in the next segment. In addition, the student to instructor proportion should be no higher than 4 to 1. If it’s any greater, then students will not be receiving the personalized attention they will need. This is particularly true regarding the one-on-one instruction for behind the wheel training. And be critical of any school that professes it can train you to drive trucks in a comparatively short time frame. Learning to be an operator and to drive a tractor trailer skillfully takes time. The majority of Santa Clarita CA schools provide training programs that run from three weeks to as long as two months, based on the class of license or kind of vehicle.

How Experienced are the Trainers? As already mentioned, it’s imperative that the instructors are qualified to teach driving techniques and experienced as both instructors and drivers. Even though a number of states have minimum driving time requirements to be certified as an instructor, the more professional driving experience an instructor has the better. It’s also vital that the teachers stay up to date with industry advancements or any new regulations or changes in existing laws. Assessing instructors may be a little more intuitive than other standards, and possibly the best approach 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 ask if they are satisfied with the level of instruction and the teacher’s qualification to train them.

Enough Driving Time? Above all else, a good truck driving school will furnish 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 essential training methods, they are no replacement for actual driving. The more instruction that a student gets behind the wheel, the better driver he or she will be. Although driving time differs among schools, a reasonable benchmark is a minimum of 32 hours. If the school is PTDI certified, it will furnish at least 44 hours of driving time. Check with the Santa Clarita CA schools you are researching and ask how much driving time they provide.

Are they Captive or Independent ? You can get discounted or even free training from a number of trucking schools if you make a commitment to be a driver for a particular carrier for a defined period of time. This is called contract training, and the schools that provide it are called captives. So rather than having relationships with many different trucking lines that they can refer their students to, captives only refer to one company. The benefit 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 limit your income prospects when beginning your new career. But for some it may be the best way to get affordable training. Just make sure to inquire if the Santa Clarita CA schools you are contemplating are independent or captive so that you can make an informed decision.

Offer Onsite CDL Testing? There are some states that will allow 3rd party CDL testing onsite of truck driving schools for its grads. If onsite testing is permitted in California, find out if the schools you are looking at are DMV certified to provide it. One benefit is that it is more accommodating than contending with graduates of other schools for test times at California testing locations. It is moreover an indication that the DMV views the authorized schools to be of a superior quality.

Are the Classes Accessible? As previously noted, CDL training is only about one to two months long. With such a short duration, it’s essential that the Santa Clarita CA school you select 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 spend more time with you until you are proficient. And if you’re still employed while attending training, then the class scheduling needs to be flexible enough to accommodate working hours or other responsibilities.

Is Job Assistance Offered? As soon as you have obtained your CDL license after graduating from truck driver school, you will be anxious to begin your new career. Confirm that the schools you are contemplating have job placement programs. Find out what their job placement rate is and what average salary their grads start at. Also, find out which local and national trucking companies their graduates are placed with for employment. If a school has a low job placement rate or few Santa Clarita CA employers hiring their graduates, it might be a sign to look elsewhere.

Is Financial Assistance Offered? Truck driving schools are similar to colleges and other Santa Clarita CA area technical or vocational schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial assistance being offered. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have a financial assistance department, or at least someone who can help you get through the options and forms that need to be submitted.

Bus Driving School Santa Clarita California

Santa Clarita CA long haul truckChoosing the appropriate truck driver school is an essential first step to starting your new occupation as a long distance or local truck driver. The skill sets taught at school will be those that shape 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 Bus Driving School and wanting information on the topic Truck Drivers School.  But first and foremost, you must obtain the appropriate training in order to operate a big commercial vehicle in a safe and professional manner. If you are short on funds or financing, you might 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 option of driving for the trucking firm of your choosing, or one of several associated with the school. It’s your choice. But regardless of how you get your training, you will soon be part of a profession that helps our country move as a professional trucker in Santa Clarita CA.

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    Santa Clarita, California

    Santa Clarita, officially the City of Santa Clarita, is the third largest city in Los Angeles County, California, and the 24th largest in the state of California.[6] The city has annexed a number of unincorporated areas, contributing to the large population increase. It is located about 35 miles (56 kilometers) northwest of downtown Los Angeles, and occupies most of the Santa Clarita Valley. It is a notable example of a U.S. edge city or boomburb. Santa Clarita was ranked by Money magazine in 2006 as 18th of the top 100 places to live.[9]

    Santa Clarita was incorporated in December 1987 as the union of four unincorporated communities, Canyon Country, Newhall, Saugus, and Valencia, most of which are situated on the land of the former Rancho San Francisco.[10] The four communities retain separate identities, and it is common for residents to refer to a specific neighborhood when asked where they are from. Santa Clarita is bounded on the west by the Golden State Freeway (I-5). The Antelope Valley Freeway (SR-14) runs northeast-southwest through an irregular east border, and the Newhall Pass is the city's southernmost point.

    Six Flags Magic Mountain amusement park and Stevenson Ranch are both commonly associated with Santa Clarita, though since both are located west of Interstate 5, neither is actually within the Santa Clarita city limits.

     

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