How to Decide on the Best CDL Training Classes near Kersey Colorado
Congratulations on your decision to become a trucker and enroll in a CDL school near Kersey CO. Maybe it has always been your goal to hit the open highway while driving a monster tractor trailer. Or possibly you have done some research and have discovered that an occupation as a truck driver provides good income and flexible work prospects. No matter what your reason is, it’s essential to receive the proper training by picking the right CDL school in your area. When reviewing your options, there are a number of variables that you’ll need to examine prior to making your ultimate choice. Location will undoubtedly be important, especially if you need to commute from your Kersey home. The cost will also be important, but choosing a school based entirely on price is not the ideal method to ensure you’ll obtain the right training. Just remember, your goal is to learn the knowledge and skills that will enable you to pass the CDL examinations and become a qualified truck driver. So keeping that objective in mind, just how do you decide on a truck driving school? The answer to that question is what we are going to discuss 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 CDL Will You Require?
In order to drive commercial vehicles lawfully within the USA and Kersey CO, a driver must 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 driver 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 as well as the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) or GCWR (Gross Combination Weight Rating). Following are short explanations for the 2 classes.
Class A CDL. A Class A Commercial Drivers License 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. Several 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 required 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. 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 CDLs might also require endorsements to drive specific kinds of vehicles, including school or passenger buses. And a Class A license holder, with the proper needed endorsements, may drive any vehicle that a Class B licensee is authorized to operate.
How to Assess a Truck Driver School
When you have decided which CDL you would like to obtain, you can begin the process of assessing the Kersey CO trucking schools that you are looking at. As earlier mentioned, cost and location will undoubtedly be your initial considerations. But it can’t be stressed enough that they must not be your only concerns. Other variables, for instance the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are equally or even more important. So below are some additional points that you need to research while conducting your due diligence prior to choosing, and especially paying for, your truck driving training.
Are the Schools Certified or Accredited ? Very few truck driving schools in the Kersey CO area are accredited due to the demanding process and expense to the schools. However, certification is more typical and is provided by the Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI). A school is not obligated to become certified, but there are several advantages. Interested students recognize that the training will be of the highest quality, and that they will be given lots of driving time. For example, PTDI requires 44 hours of real driving time, not ride-alongs or simulations. So if a school’s course is certified (the course, not the school is certified), students know that the training and curriculum will fulfill the very high benchmarks set by PTDI.
How Long in Operation? One indicator to help determine the quality of a truck driving school is how long it has been in business. A poorly ranked or a fly by night school usually will not be in business very long, so longevity is a plus. Having said that, even the top Kersey 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 track record is concerning successful licensing and job placement of its graduates. If a school won’t supply those numbers, look elsewhere. The schools should also have relationships with local and national trucking firms. 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 be a bad idea to get in touch with the Colorado licensing authority to make sure that the CDL trucker schools you are reviewing are in compliance.
How Effective is the Training? As a minimum requirement, the schools should be licensed in Colorado and hire teachers that are trained and experienced. We will talk more about the teachers in the following segment. Also, the student to instructor proportion should not be higher than 4 to 1. If it’s any higher, then students will not be getting the individual 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 insists it can train you to drive trucks in a relatively short time period. Training to be an operator and to drive a tractor trailer professionally takes time. The majority of Kersey CO schools offer training courses that run from 3 weeks to as long as two months, based on the license class or type of vehicle.
How Good are the Instructors? As earlier stated, it’s imperative that the teachers are trained to teach driving methods and experienced as both instructors and drivers. Even though a number of 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 instructors stay current with industry advancements or any new laws or changes in regulations. Assessing teachers may be a bit 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 speak with a few 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.
Enough Driving Time? Most importantly, a good truck driving school will provide 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 driving a truck. Although the use of ride-a-longs with other students and simulators are essential training methods, they are no substitute 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 32 hours at a minimum. If the school is PTDI certified, it will provide a minimum of 44 hours of driving time. Check with the Kersey CO schools you are researching and find out how much driving time they furnish.
Are they Independent or Captive ? You can receive free or discounted training from some trucking schools if you make a commitment to drive for a particular carrier for a defined amount of time. This is what’s known as contract training, and the schools that provide it are called captives. So instead of maintaining relationships with numerous trucking lines that they can refer their students to, captives only work with one company. The benefit is receiving less expensive or even free training by surrendering the freedom to initially work wherever you choose. Clearly contract training has the potential to reduce your income opportunities when starting out. But for many it may be the ideal way to obtain affordable training. Just remember to find out if the Kersey CO schools you are contemplating are independent or captive so that you can make an informed decision.
Offer CDL Testing Onsite? There are a number of states that will permit third party CDL testing onsite of trucking schools for its grads. If onsite testing is available in Colorado, find out if the schools you are considering are DMV certified to offer it. One benefit is that it is more accommodating than battling with graduates of other schools for test times at Colorado testing facilities. It is moreover an indicator that the DMV views the authorized schools to be of a higher quality.
Are the Classes Convenient? As earlier mentioned, truck driving training is just 1 to 2 months long. With such a short duration, it’s imperative that the Kersey CO school you choose offers 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 prepared to commit 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 accommodate working hours or other commitments.
Is Job Placement Provided? As soon as you have acquired your commercial driver’s license after graduating from truck driver school, you will be anxious to start your new career. Verify that the schools you are contemplating have job placement programs. Ask what their job placement percentage is and what average salary their graduates start at. Also, ask which local and national trucking companies their graduates are placed with for hiring. If a school has a lower job placement rate or not many Kersey CO employers hiring their grads, it might be a sign to look elsewhere.
Is Financial Aid Provided? Truck driver schools are much like colleges and other Kersey CO area trade or technical schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial aid being available. Find out if the schools you are examining have a financial assistance department, or at a minimum someone who can help you get through the options and forms that need to be completed.
Best Truck Driving Schools Kersey Colorado
Picking the ideal truck driver school is an essential first step to beginning your new vocation as a long distance or local truck driver. The skills that you will learn at school will be those that mold a new career behind the wheel. There are several options offered and understanding them is crucial if you are going to succeed as an operator. You originally came to our website because of your interest in Best Truck Driving Schools and wanting information on the topic How Can I Get A CDL License. However, you must get the appropriate training in order to drive a large commercial vehicle in a professional and safe manner. If you are short on money or financing, you might need to consider a captive school. You will pay a reduced or in some cases no tuition in exchange for driving for their contracted carrier. Or you can select an independent trucking school and have the the freedom to drive for the trucking firm of your choosing, or one of several affiliated with the school. It’s your choice. But regardless of how you receive your training, you will soon be entering an industry that helps America move as a professional trucker in Kersey CO.
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Elbridge Gerry established a trading post called Fort Gerry on the South Platte River near the present-day town of Kersey, Colorado in the 1830s. He had two Native American wives who helped him run the post. In 1840, Gerry abandoned the site and built a post on the south bank of the river. Gerry is said to be the first white man to settle in what is now Weld County.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,389 people, 474 households, and 374 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,425.8 people per square mile (552.9/km²). There were 489 housing units at an average density of 502.0 per square mile (194.6/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 91.43% White, 0.07% African American, 0.29% Native American, 0.79% Asian, 4.75% from other races, and 2.66% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 20.01% of the population.
There were 474 households out of which 48.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.4% were married couples living together, 12.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 20.9% were non-families. 17.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.93 and the average family size was 3.33.
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