Best CDL Schools Bellvue CO

How to Choose the Right CDL Training School near Bellvue Colorado

tractor truck in Bellvue CO Congrats on your decision to become a trucker and enroll in a truck driving school near Bellvue CO. Maybe it has always been your ambition to hit the open road while driving a monster tractor trailer. Or perhaps you have done some research and have found that an occupation as a truck driver provides excellent income and flexible work opportunities. Whatever your reason is, it’s important to get the proper training by choosing the right CDL school in your area. When evaluating your options, there are certain factors that you’ll want to consider before making your final choice. Location will certainly be an issue, particularly if you need to commute from your Bellvue home. The expense will also be important, but selecting a school based solely on price is not the optimal method to ensure you’ll receive the right training. Just remember, your goal is to learn the skills and knowledge that will allow you to pass the CDL exams and become a professional truck driver. So keeping that goal 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 balance of this article. But first, we are going to talk a little bit about which CDL license you will eventually need.

Which Commercial Drivers License Will You Require?

Bellvue CO long haul tractor trailerTo drive commercial vehicles lawfully within the United States and Bellvue CO, an operator must get a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The three license classes that a driver can apply 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 focus on Class A and Class B licenses. What differentiates 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 descriptions of the two classes.

Class A CDL. A Class A Commercial Drivers License is required to drive any vehicle that has a GCWR of greater than 26,000 lbs., including a towed vehicle of more than 10,000 lbs. Several 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 CDL 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. A few 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 instance school or passenger buses. And a Class A licensee, with the appropriate needed endorsements, may drive any vehicle that a Class B license holder is qualified to drive.

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How to Research a Truck Driver School

Bellvue CO truck driving schoolAfter you have determined which CDL you would like to pursue, you can start the undertaking of researching the Bellvue CO truck driving schools that you are looking at. As previously mentioned, location and cost will no doubt be your primary concerns. But it can’t be emphasized enough that they should not be your sole concerns. Other factors, including the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are equally if not more important. So following are several more things that you should research while performing your due diligence prior to selecting, and particularly paying for, your truck driver training.

Are the Schools Certified or Accredited ? Not many trucking schools in the Bellvue CO area are accredited due to the demanding process and cost to the schools. However, 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. Interested students know that the training will be of the highest standard, and that they will get lots of driving time. As an example, PTDI mandates 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 curriculum and training will meet the very high benchmarks set by PTDI.

How Long in Business? One indicator to help measure the quality of a trucking school is how long it has been in operation. A poorly reviewed or a fly by night school typically will not be in business very long, so longevity is a plus. However, even the best of Bellvue CO schools had to begin from their opening day of training, so use it as one of several qualifiers. You can also learn what the school’s history is concerning successful licensing and employment of its graduates. If a school won’t provide those numbers, look elsewhere. The schools should additionally have relationships with regional and national trucking companies. Having numerous contacts not only affirms a superior reputation within the profession, but also bolsters their job assistance program for graduates. It also wouldn’t hurt to contact the Colorado licensing authority to verify that the CDL trucker schools you are researching are in compliance.

How Good is the Training? At a minimum, the schools should be licensed in Colorado and hire teachers that are trained and experienced. We will cover more about the instructors in the next section. In addition, the student to instructor proportion should not be higher than 4 to 1. If it’s any greater, then students will not be receiving 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 time frame. Learning to be an operator and to drive a tractor trailer skillfully takes time. The majority of Bellvue CO schools offer training courses that range from three weeks to as long as 2 months, based on the license class or type of vehicle.

How Experienced are the Teachers? As previously mentioned, it’s essential that the instructors are qualified to teach driving techniques and experienced as both instructors and drivers. Even though several states have minimum driving time requirements to qualify as an instructor, the more professional driving experience a teacher has the better. It’s also crucial that the teachers keep up to date with industry developments or any new regulations or changes in existing laws. Evaluating instructors may be a little more subjective than other criteria, and possibly the best method is to visit the school and speak with the instructors face to face. You can also talk to some 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.

Plenty of Driving Time? Most importantly, a good truck driver school will furnish lots of driving time to its students. Besides, isn’t that what it’s all about? Driving time is the real time spent behind the wheel operating a truck. Although the use of ride-a-longs with other students and simulators are essential training tools, they are no replacement for actual driving. The more training that a student receives behind the wheel, the better driver he or she will be. And even though driving time differs between schools, a good standard is a minimum of 32 hours. If the school is PTDI certified, it will provide no less than 44 hours of driving time. Get in touch with the Bellvue CO schools you are looking at and ask how much driving time they furnish.

Are they Captive or Independent ? It’s possible to receive discounted or even free training from some truck driver schools if you make a commitment to drive for a particular carrier for a defined period of time. This is referred to as contract training, and the schools that offer it are called captives. So instead of having relationships with numerous trucking lines that they can place their graduates with, captives only refer to one company. The benefit is receiving less expensive or even free training by giving up the flexibility to initially work wherever you have an opportunity. Naturally contract training has the potential to limit your income opportunities when starting out. But for many it may be the best way to get affordable training. Just be sure to ask if the Bellvue CO schools you are contemplating 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 driving schools for its grads. If onsite testing is allowed in Colorado, find out if the schools you are looking at are DMV certified to offer it. One benefit is that it is more convenient than competing with graduates from other schools for test times at Colorado testing locations. It is also an indication that the DMV deems the authorized schools to be of a superior quality.

Are the Classes Flexible? As previously mentioned, truck driving training is just one to two months long. With such a short term, it’s important that the Bellvue CO school you select offers flexibility for both the curriculum and the scheduling of classes. As an example, if you’re having a hard time learning a certain driving maneuver, then the teacher should be willing to commit more time with you until you have it mastered. And if you’re still holding a job while going to training, then the class scheduling must be flexible enough to accommodate working hours or other obligations.

Is Job Placement Offered? As soon as you have acquired your CDL license after graduating from truck driver school, you will be eager to begin your new profession. Confirm that the schools you are reviewing have job placement programs. Ask what their job placement rate is and what average salary their graduates start at. Also, ask which local and national trucking firms their graduates are referred to for hiring. If a school has a low job placement rate or not many Bellvue CO employers hiring their graduates, it might be a sign to search elsewhere.

Is Financial Assistance Provided? Truck driving schools are similar to colleges and other Bellvue CO area trade or technical schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial aid being available. Ask if the schools you are examining have a financial aid department, or at least someone who can help you get through the options and forms that need to be completed.

Best CDL Schools Bellvue Colorado

Bellvue CO long haul truckSelecting the right truck driver school is an essential 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 mold a new career behind the wheel. There are a number of options available and understanding them is crucial to a new driver’s success.  You originally came to our website because of your interest in Best CDL Schools and wanting information on the topic CDL Classes Near Me.  However, you must receive the necessary training in order to drive a large commercial vehicle in a safe and professional fashion. If you are short on funds or financing, you may want to look into a captive school. You will pay a lower or in some cases no tuition in exchange for driving for their contracted carrier. Or you can choose an independent truck driving school and have the the freedom to drive for the trucking firm of your choice, or one of several associated with the school. It’s your decision. But no matter how you obtain your training, you will in the near future be part of an industry that helps our country move as a professional truck driver in Bellvue CO.

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    Bellvue, Colorado

    Bellvue is an unincorporated community and U.S. Post Office in Larimer County, Colorado. It is a small agricultural community located in Pleasant Valley, a narrow valley just northwest of Fort Collins near the mouth of the Poudre Canyon between the Dakota Hogback ridge and the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. The ZIP Code of the Bellvue Post Office is 80512.[2]

    The community is lush area on the south side of the Cache la Poudre River, at the mouth of Rist Canyon, concealed from the open Colorado Piedmont near Fort Collins and LaPorte by the Bellvue Dome, also known as "Goat Hill". The valley formerly stretched southward between the hogback and foothills into the area now inundated by Horsetooth Reservoir. The main agriculture in the valley is cultivation of hay and other crops, as well as cattle and horse ranches. The Colorado Division of Wildlife maintains a large trout hatchery in the valley just north of the Bellvue town site.

    Paleoindian sites nearby, including a large bison kill site along the Poudre River, indicate human habitation dating back over 10,000 years. In the early 19th century, the area was inhabited by bands of Arapaho, who clashed regularly in small skirmishes with bands of the Ute tribe who inhabited the mountains. Archaeological remains of teepee rings can be found in the surrounding foothills.

     

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