Class B Truck Driving Schools Stevenson Ranch CA

How to Find the Right Truck Driver School near Stevenson Ranch California

tractor truck in Stevenson Ranch CA Congrats on your decision to become a truck driver and enroll in a CDL school near Stevenson Ranch CA. Maybe it has always been your goal to hit the open road while driving a monster tractor trailer. Or possibly you have done some analysis and have discovered that an occupation as a truck driver offers good pay and flexible work opportunities. No matter what your reason is, it’s essential to obtain the proper training by selecting the right CDL school in your area. When reviewing your options, there are several variables that you’ll need to consider before making your final choice. Location will certainly be an issue, particularly if you have to commute from your Stevenson Ranch home. The expense will also be important, but choosing a school based solely on price is not the optimal means to make sure you’ll receive the appropriate training. Don’t forget, your objective is to learn the skills and knowledge that will enable you to pass the CDL exams and become a professional truck driver. So keeping that target in mind, just how do you pick a truck driving school? That is what we are going to discuss in the balance of this article. But first, we are going to discuss a little bit about which CDL license you will ultimately need.

Which Commercial Drivers License Should You Get?

Stevenson Ranch CA long haul tractor trailerTo drive commercial vehicles legally within the USA and Stevenson Ranch CA, an operator needs to obtain a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The 3 classes of licenses that a driver can qualify for are Class A, Class B and Class C. Since the topic of this article is how to select a truck driving school, we will discuss Class A and Class B licenses. What distinguishes each class of CDL is the type of vehicle that the driver can operate as well as the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) or GCWR (Gross Combination Weight Rating). Below are short descriptions for the two classes.

Class A CDL. A Class A CDL is needed to drive any vehicle that has a GCWR of more than 26,000 lbs., including a towed vehicle of greater 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 Commercial Drivers License is needed to operate single vehicles having a GVWR of more 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 might also need endorsements to operate specific kinds of vehicles, for example passenger or school buses. And a Class A licensee, with the appropriate needed endorsements, can drive any vehicle that a Class B licensee is authorized to drive.

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How to Research a Truck Driver School

Stevenson Ranch CA truck driving schoolAs soon as you have decided which Commercial Drivers License you would like to pursue, you can begin the process of evaluating the Stevenson Ranch CA truck driver schools that you are looking at. As already discussed, cost and location will undoubtedly be your primary concerns. But it can’t be emphasized enough that they must not be your sole concerns. Other factors, including the reputations of the schools or the experience of the instructors are equally if not more important. So following are some more factors that you should research while conducting your due diligence prior to selecting, and particularly paying for, your truck driving training.

Are the Schools Accredited or Certified ? Not many truck driver schools in the Stevenson Ranch CA area are accredited because of the demanding process and cost to the schools. On the other hand, certification is more typical and is offered 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 get lots of driving time. For example, PTDI calls for 44 hours of real 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 meet the very high benchmarks set by PTDI.

How Long in Business? One clue to help assess the quality of a trucking school is how long it has been in operation. A negatively rated or a fly by night school typically will not stay in business very long, so longevity is a plus. However, even the top Stevenson Ranch CA schools had to start from their opening day of training, so use it as one of several qualifiers. You can also find out what the school’s track record is regarding successful licensing and employment of its graduating students. If a school won’t share those numbers, search elsewhere. The schools should additionally maintain associations with local and national trucking firms. Having numerous contacts not only confirms an excellent reputation within the trade, but also boosts their job assistance program for graduates. It also wouldn’t hurt to get in touch with the California licensing authority to verify that the CDL trucker schools you are researching are in compliance.

How Effective is the Training? At a minimum, the schools should be licensed in California and hire teachers that are experienced and trained. We will talk more about the teachers in the next section. Also, the student to instructor ratio should not be greater than 4 to 1. If it’s any higher, then students will not be receiving the individual instruction they will need. This is especially true concerning the one-on-one instruction for behind the wheel training. And watch out for any school that insists it can teach you to drive trucks in a comparatively short time period. Training to be an operator and to drive a tractor trailer professionally takes time. The majority of Stevenson Ranch CA schools offer training programs that range from 3 weeks to as long as two months, depending on the class of license or type of vehicle.

How Experienced are the Trainers? As earlier mentioned, it’s important that the teachers are qualified to teach driving techniques and experienced as both drivers and instructors. Even though several states have minimum driving time criteria to be certified as an instructor, the more successful driving experience a teacher has the better. It’s also important that the teachers keep current with industry developments or any new regulations or changes in existing laws. Evaluating instructors might be a little more subjective than other standards, and perhaps the best approach is to pay a visit to the school and speak with the instructors face to face. You can also talk to some of the students going through the training and ask if they are happy with the level of instruction and the teacher’s ability to train them.

Enough Driving Time? Above all else, an excellent truck driver school will furnish sufficient 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. Although the use of ride-a-longs with other students and simulators are important training tools, they are no substitute for real driving. The more instruction that a student receives behind the wheel, the better driver he or she will become. Although driving time differs among schools, a reasonable standard is a minimum of 32 hours. If the school is PTDI certified, it will provide at least 44 hours of driving time. Check with the Stevenson Ranch CA schools you are looking at and ask how much driving time they furnish.

Are they Independent or Captive ? It’s possible to get free or discounted training from certain truck driving schools if you make a commitment to drive 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 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 free or less expensive training by surrendering the freedom to initially be a driver wherever you have an opportunity. Clearly contract training has the potential to restrict your income opportunities when beginning your new career. But for many it may be the ideal way to obtain affordable training. Just be sure to find out if the Stevenson Ranch CA schools you are considering are captive or independent so that you can make an informed decision.

Provide CDL Testing Onsite? There are a number of states that will permit 3rd party CDL testing onsite of trucking schools for its graduates. If onsite testing is permitted in California, ask if the schools you are reviewing are DMV certified to offer it. One advantage is that it is more accommodating than battling with graduates of other schools for test times at California testing facilities. It is moreover an indication that the DMV deems the authorized schools to be of a superior quality.

Are the Classes Convenient? As formerly mentioned, truck driving training is only about one to two months long. With such a short duration, it’s important that the Stevenson Ranch CA 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 devote more time with you until you are proficient. And if you’re still holding a job while going to training, then the class scheduling needs to be flexible enough to fit in working hours or other obligations.

Is Job Assistance Offered? The moment you have obtained your CDL license after graduating from trucking school, you will be impatient to begin your new profession. Make sure that the schools you are contemplating have job placement programs. Ask 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 lower job placement rate or few Stevenson Ranch CA employers recruiting their grads, it might be a clue to search elsewhere.

Is Financial Assistance Available? Trucking schools are comparable to colleges and other Stevenson Ranch CA area vocational or trade schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial assistance being offered. Ask if the schools you are assessing have a financial aid department, or at least someone who can help you navigate the options and forms that must be submitted.

Class B Truck Driving Schools Stevenson Ranch California

Stevenson Ranch CA long haul truckSelecting the appropriate truck driver school is an essential first step to launching your new profession as a long distance or local truck driver. The skill sets taught at school will be those that forge a new career behind the wheel. There are many options offered and understanding them is vital to a new driver’s success.  You originally came to our website because of your interest in Class B Truck Driving Schools and wanting information on the topic Local Truck Driving Schools.  However, you must obtain the appropriate training in order to operate a large commercial vehicle in a safe and professional fashion. If you are short on money or financing, you may want to consider a captive school. You will pay a lower or in some cases no tuition by agreeing to drive for their contracted carrier. Or you can enroll in an independent CDL school and have the the freedom to drive for the trucking firm of your choice, or one of several affiliated with the school. It’s your decision. But regardless of how you receive your training, you will soon be part of an industry that helps our country move as a professional truck driver in Stevenson Ranch CA.

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    Stevenson Ranch, California

    Stevenson Ranch is a census-designated place in Los Angeles County, California. The community is located in the Santa Clarita Valley. Often incorrectly referred to as part of the city of Santa Clarita, the community does not actually fall within the city limits and is instead in an unincorporated area. It has many new suburban one- and two-story houses in new developments, with a median value of $1,034,600. Stevenson Ranch encompasses about 6.4 square miles (17 km2). About 1,000 acres (4.0 km2) are set aside as parks, recreation areas, and open space. Stevenson Ranch is set in the foothills of the Santa Susana Mountains and lies west of Interstate 5. One of the newer communities in the Santa Clarita Valley, which was ranked number 18 of the top 100 places to live by Money Magazine in 2006, This area backs up to the historic, oil-mining town of Mentryville, founded in 1875. A master-planned community, it was approved by the county in 1987. The population was 17,557 at the time of the 2010 census.

    It is home to the award winning California Distinguished and National Blue Ribbon Schools: Stevenson Ranch Elementary and Pico Canyon Elementary (part of the Newhall School District), and Rancho Pico Junior High, and West Ranch High School (part of the William S. Hart High School District), The Valencia Marketplace and Stevenson Ranch Shopping Center are popular shopping areas in the community. Six Flags Magic Mountain, an amusement park, is located about three miles north of the community.

    It is also the filming location of several film and television productions, including the television show Weeds, a Showtime original series, as well as the feature film Pleasantville. Its master-planned nature is at the heart of the suburban commentary of Weeds, such as the "Little Boxes" song and sprawling development portrayed in the opening of the show.

     

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