How to Choose the Best Truck Driving School near Arnoldsville Georgia
Congratulations on your decision to become a truck driver and enroll in a CDL school near Arnoldsville GA. Maybe it has always been your dream to hit the open highway while operating a huge tractor trailer. Or possibly you have conducted some analysis and have discovered that an occupation as a truck driver provides good pay and flexible job opportunities. Whatever your reason is, it’s essential to obtain the proper training by selecting the right CDL school in your area. When evaluating your options, there are certain variables that you’ll need to consider before making your final choice. Location will undoubtedly be an issue, especially if you need to commute from your Arnoldsville home. The cost will also be important, but selecting a school based solely on price is not the ideal method to make sure you’ll get the right education. Don’t forget, your objective is to master the knowledge and skills that will enable you to pass the CDL exams 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 cover 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 Commercial Drivers License Will You Need?
In order to operate commercial vehicles lawfully within the United States and Arnoldsville GA, a driver needs to obtain a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The 3 classes of licenses that a driver can apply for are Class A, Class B and Class C. Given that the subject of this article is how to select a truck driving school, we will address Class A and Class 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). Below are brief descriptions of the two 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. 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 required to drive single vehicles having a GVWR of greater 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 may also need endorsements to drive certain kinds of vehicles, including school or passenger buses. And a Class A licensee, with the appropriate required endorsements, can operate any vehicle that a Class B licensee is authorized to operate.
How to Research a Truck Driving School
Once you have decided which CDL you wish to obtain, you can start the undertaking of researching the Arnoldsville GA truck driver schools that you are looking at. As already mentioned, cost and location will no doubt be your primary considerations. But it can’t be stressed enough that they must not be your only concerns. Other factors, such as the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are similarly if not 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 ? Very few truck driving schools in the Arnoldsville GA area are accredited due to the demanding 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 obligated to become certified, but there are certain advantages. Prospective students know that the training will be of the highest quality, and that they will receive an ample amount of driving time. As an example, PTDI calls for 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 measure up to the very high standards set by PTDI.
How Long in Business? One clue to help evaluate the quality of a truck driver school is how long it has been in business. A poorly ranked or a fly by night school normally will not stay in business very long, so longevity is a plus. On the other hand, even the best of Arnoldsville GA schools had to begin from their opening day of training, so consider it as one of several qualifications. You can also ask what the school’s track record is regarding successful licensing and job placement of its graduating students. If a school won’t provide those stats, search elsewhere. The schools should also maintain associations with local and national trucking firms. Having a large number of contacts not only affirms a superior reputation within the trade, but also bolsters their job placement program for graduates. It also wouldn’t be a bad idea to contact the Georgia licensing department to verify that the CDL trucker schools you are reviewing are in compliance.
How Good is the Training? At a minimum, the schools should be licensed in Georgia and employ teachers that are experienced and trained. We will talk more about the teachers in the following section. In addition, the student to instructor ratio should be no greater than 4 to 1. If it’s any higher, then students will not be getting the individual attention 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 professes it can train you to be a truck driver in a relatively short period of time. Learning to be an operator and to drive a tractor trailer skillfully takes time. Most Arnoldsville GA schools offer training courses that run from 3 weeks to as long as two months, based on the license class or kind of vehicle.
How Experienced are the Trainers? As earlier stated, it’s essential that the teachers are qualified to teach driving techniques and experienced as both drivers and instructors. Even though a number of states have minimum driving time requirements to be certified as a teacher, the more successful driving experience a teacher has the better. It’s also vital that the teachers keep current with industry developments or any new laws or changes in regulations. Evaluating teachers may be a bit more intuitive than other standards, and possibly the best approach is to check out 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 satisfied with the quality of instruction and the teacher’s ability to train them.
Adequate Driving Time? Above all else, a good truck driver school will furnish ample driving time to its students. After all, isn’t that what it’s all about? Driving time is the actual time spent behind the wheel driving a truck. Even though the use of simulators and ride-a-longs with other students are important training tools, they are no replacement for real driving. The more training 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 a minimum of 44 hours of driving time. Check with the Arnoldsville GA schools you are looking at and ask how much driving time they provide.
Are they Independent or Captive ? You can receive discounted or even free training from a number of truck driving schools if you enter into an agreement to drive for a specific carrier for a defined time period. This is what’s known as contract training, and the schools that provide it are called captives. So instead of having affiliations with numerous trucking lines that they can refer their students to, captives only work with one company. The tradeoff is receiving less expensive or even free training by giving up the freedom to initially work wherever you choose. Obviously contract training has the potential to restrict your income opportunities when beginning your new career. But for many it may be the only way to receive affordable training. Just be sure to find out if the Arnoldsville GA schools you are considering are independent or captive so that you can make an informed decision.
Provide CDL Testing Onsite? There are a number of states that will permit third party CDL testing onsite of truck driving schools for its students. If onsite testing is permitted in Georgia, ask if the schools you are considering are DMV certified to provide it. One benefit is that it is more convenient than contending with graduates of other schools for test times at Georgia testing facilities. It is moreover an indication that the DMV believes the approved schools to be of a superior quality.
Are the Class Times Convenient? As earlier mentioned, truck driving training is just 1 to 2 months long. With such a brief duration, it’s imperative that the Arnoldsville GA school you enroll in offers flexibility for both the scheduling of classes and the curriculum. For example, if you’re having a hard time learning a particular driving maneuver, then the instructor should be willing to spend more time with you until you have it mastered. And if you’re still employed while attending training, then the class scheduling must be flexible enough to accommodate working hours or other commitments.
Is Job Assistance Offered? As soon as you have acquired your commercial driver’s license after graduating from trucking school, you will be keen to start your new career. Confirm that the schools you are looking at have job assistance programs. Ask what their job placement ratio is and what average salary their grads start at. Also, ask which local and national trucking companies their graduates are placed with for employment. If a school has a lower job placement rate or not many Arnoldsville GA employers recruiting their grads, it might be a clue to search elsewhere.
Is Financial Assistance Available? Truck driver schools are comparable to colleges and other Arnoldsville GA 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 reviewing have a financial assistance department, or at least someone who can help you understand the options and forms that need to be submitted.
How To Choose CDL Training Arnoldsville Georgia
Choosing the ideal trucking school is an important 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 mold a new career behind the wheel. There are many options available and understanding them is critical to a new driver’s success. You originally came to our website because of your interest in How To Choose CDL Training and wanting information on the topic CDL Training Course. However, you must get the proper training in order to operate a big commercial vehicle in a safe and professional fashion. If you are short on cash or financing, you may want to consider a captive school. You will pay a reduced or even no tuition in exchange for driving for their contracted carrier. Or you can enroll in an independent truck driver school and have the option of driving for the trucking company of your choice, or one of several affiliated with the school. It’s your decision. But no matter how you get your training, you will soon be joining an industry that helps our country move as a professional truck driver in Arnoldsville GA.
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Arnoldsville was originally called "Cherokee Corner". The name was changed in 1894 to Edwin, after Edwin Shaw, the keeper of a country store. In 1896, the store was sold to N. D. Arnold, and the town's name was changed yet again. Arnold incorporated in 1969.
As of the census of 2000, there were 312 people, 125 households, and 88 families residing in the city. The population density was 185.7 people per square mile (71.7/km²). There were 136 housing units at an average density of 80.9 per square mile (31.3/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 96.47% White, 1.60% African American, 0.32% Asian, 0.96% from other races, and 0.64% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.92% of the population.
There were 125 households out of which 33.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.8% were married couples living together, 11.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.6% were non-families. 28.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.50 and the average family size was 3.08.
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