CDL Schools Erie CO

How to Find the Right Trucking Classes near Erie Colorado

tractor truck in Erie CO Congratulations on your decision to become a trucker and enroll in a truck driving school near Erie CO. Maybe it has always been your dream to hit the open highway while operating a big ole tractor trailer. Or possibly you have done some analysis and have found that a career as a truck driver provides excellent pay and flexible job prospects. Regardless of what your reason is, it’s important to receive the proper training by picking the right CDL school in your area. When assessing your options, there are certain factors that you’ll want to consider before making your ultimate choice. Location will certainly be important, particularly if you have to commute from your Erie residence. The expense will also be of importance, but picking a school based only on price is not the best method to guarantee you’ll obtain the right training. Don’t forget, your goal is to learn the skills and knowledge that will allow you to pass the CDL examinations and become a qualified truck driver. So keeping that objective in mind, just how do you pick a truck driving school? That is what we are going to discuss in the rest of this article. But first, we are going to review a little bit about which commercial driver’s license you will ultimately need.

Which Commercial Drivers License Should You Get?

Erie CO long haul tractor trailerIn order to drive commercial vehicles legally within the United States and Erie CO, a driver must attain a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The three license classes that a person can qualify for are Class A, Class B and Class C. Given that the topic of this article is how to pick 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 short summaries of the 2 classes.

Class A CDL. A Class A CDL is required to operate 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 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. 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 may also need endorsements to operate certain types of vehicles, including passenger or school buses. And a Class A license holder, with the proper needed endorsements, can operate any vehicle that a Class B license holder is qualified to operate.

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How to Research a CDL School

Erie CO truck driving schoolWhen you have decided which Commercial Drivers License you would like to pursue, you can start the undertaking of evaluating the Erie CO truck driver schools that you are considering. As earlier discussed, cost and location will no doubt be your primary concerns. But it can’t be emphasized enough that they must not be your only concerns. Other issues, for example the reputations of the schools or the experience of the instructors are equally or even more important. So following are some additional factors that you should research while performing your due diligence before selecting, and especially paying for, your truck driver training.

Are the Schools Accredited or Certified ? Not many truck driving schools in the Erie CO area are accredited due to the rigorous process and expense to the schools. On the other hand, certification is more commonplace 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. Prospective students know that the training will be of the highest caliber, and that they will get lots of driving time. For example, PTDI mandates 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 measure up to the very high standards set by PTDI.

How Long in Business? One clue to help measure the quality of a truck driving school is how long it has been in business. A negatively ranked or a fly by night school typically will not be in business very long, so longevity is a plus. Having said that, even the top Erie CO schools had to start from their opening day of training, so use it as one of multiple qualifiers. You can also ask what the school’s history is pertaining to successful licensing and job placement of its graduates. If a school won’t provide those numbers, look elsewhere. The schools should also maintain relationships with regional and national trucking companies. Having a large number of contacts not only confirms a quality reputation within the trade, but also bolsters their job placement program for graduates. It also wouldn’t hurt to get in touch with the Colorado licensing department to make sure that the CDL trucking schools you are considering are in compliance.

How Effective is the Training? At a minimum, the schools must be licensed in Colorado and hire teachers that are experienced and trained. We will discuss more about the teachers in the next section. In addition, the student to instructor proportion should not be higher than 4 to 1. If it’s any higher, then students will not be obtaining the personal instruction they will need. This is especially true regarding the one-on-one instruction for behind the wheel training. And watch out for any school that claims it can teach you to be a truck driver in a comparatively short time period. Learning to be an operator and to drive a tractor trailer professionally requires time. Most Erie CO schools provide training programs that range from three weeks to as long as two months, based on the class of license or type of vehicle.

How Experienced are the Trainers? As earlier stated, it’s important that the instructors are trained to teach driving techniques and experienced as both drivers and instructors. Even though several states have minimum driving time criteria to qualify as a teacher, the more successful driving experience a teacher has the better. It’s also important that the teachers keep up to date with industry developments or any new regulations or changes in existing laws. Evaluating instructors may be a bit more intuitive than other criteria, and possibly the best method is to pay a visit to the school and talk to the teachers in person. You can also speak with some of the students going through the training and ask if they are satisfied with the quality of instruction and the teacher’s ability to train them.

Sufficient Driving Time? Above all else, a good truck driver school will provide lots of driving time to its students. After all, 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 necessary training methods, they are no replacement for actual driving. The more instruction that a student receives behind the wheel, the better driver she or he will be. And even though driving time can vary between 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 Erie CO schools you are researching and ask how much driving time they provide.

Are they Independent or Captive ? You can get discounted or even free training from a number of trucking 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 offer it are called captives. So instead of maintaining relationships with many different trucking lines that they can refer their students to, captives only work with one company. The benefit is receiving free or less expensive 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 many it may be the best way to obtain affordable training. Just make sure to inquire if the Erie CO schools you are looking at are captive or independent so that you can make an informed decision.

Provide Onsite CDL Testing? There are several states that will permit third party CDL testing onsite of trucking schools for its students. If onsite testing is available in Colorado, ask if the schools you are reviewing are DMV certified to offer it. One benefit is that it is more accommodating than contending with graduates from other schools for test times at Colorado testing facilities. It is moreover an indicator that the DMV considers the authorized schools to be of a higher quality.

Are the Classes Flexible? As formerly noted, CDL training is just 1 to 2 months long. With such a short duration, it’s essential that the Erie CO 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 dedicate more time with you until you are proficient. And if you’re still working while going to training, then the class scheduling needs to be flexible enough to accommodate working hours or other obligations.

Is Job Assistance Provided? As soon as you have attained your commercial driver’s license after graduating from trucking school, you will be keen to begin your new career. Verify that the schools you are reviewing have job assistance programs. Find out what their job placement rate is and what average salary their graduates start at. Also, ask which national and local trucking companies their graduates are placed with for hiring. If a school has a lower job placement rate or few Erie CO employers recruiting their graduates, it may be a clue to search elsewhere.

Is Financial Assistance Offered? Trucking schools are much like colleges and other Erie CO area technical or vocational schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial aid being available. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have a financial aid department, or at least someone who can help you navigate the options and forms that must be completed.

CDL Schools Erie Colorado

Erie CO long haul truckPicking the right truck driving school is a critical first step to launching your new profession as a local or long distance truck driver. The skills that you will learn at school will be those that shape a new career behind the wheel. There are several options offered 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 Schools and wanting information on the topic How To Get Class A CDL.  But first and foremost, you must obtain the appropriate training in order to operate a big commercial vehicle in a professional and safe fashion. If you are short on money or financing, you might want 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 trucking school and have the option of driving for the trucking firm of your choosing, 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 entering an industry that helps our country move as a professional truck driver in Erie CO.

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    Erie Railroad Co. v. Tompkins

    Erie Railroad Co. v. Tompkins, 304 U.S. 64 (1938), is a landmark[1] decision by the Supreme Court of the United States in which the Court held that federal courts did not have the judicial power to create general federal common law when hearing state law claims under diversity jurisdiction. In reaching this holding, the Court overturned almost a century of federal civil procedure case law, and established the foundation of what remains the modern law of diversity jurisdiction as it applies to United States federal courts.

    Erie began as a simple personal injury case when the plaintiff filed his complaint in diversity in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. As explained by the Second Circuit in its decision below, Harry Tompkins—a citizen and resident of Pennsylvania, was walking next to the Erie Railroad's Erie and Wyoming Valley Railroad tracks in Hughestown, Pennsylvania, at 2:30 a.m. on July 27, 1934. A friend of Tompkins had driven him to within a few blocks of his home, which was located on a dead-end street near the tracks. Tompkins chose to walk the remaining distance on a narrow but well-worn footpath adjacent to the tracks. A train approached in the darkness, and an object protruding from one of the cars struck Tompkins. When he fell to the ground, his right arm was crushed beneath the wheels of the train.

    The train was owned and operated by the Erie Railroad company, a New York corporation. Tompkins sued this railroad company in a federal district court—the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. The district court, following the federal law at that time, applied neither New York nor Pennsylvania common law, but instead applied federal common law, which applied an 'ordinary negligence' standard in determining the duty of care owed to persons not employed by the railroad or otherwise acting in the course of their employment walking along railroad tracks. In applying the federal common law standard, the federal court declined to apply Pennsylvania's common law standard of 'wanton negligence' for the duty of care owed by railroads to trespassers. The case was decided by a jury which was instructed by Judge Samuel Mandelbaum in accordance with the federal negligence standard. It found in favor of Tompkins and awarded him damages. The railroad appealed to the Second Circuit, which affirmed, then petitioned the Supreme Court for certiorari, which was granted; Justice Benjamin Cardozo granted the railroad a stay of its obligation to pay the judgment in Tompkins' favor until the Court decided the case.

     

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