How to Choose the Right CDL Training School near Wareham Massachusetts
Congratulations on your decision to become a trucker and enroll in a trucking school near Wareham MA. Perhaps it has always been your goal to hit the open road while operating a monster tractor trailer. Or possibly you have conducted some research and have discovered that an occupation as a truck driver offers excellent income and flexible job opportunities. Whatever your reason is, it’s important to obtain the proper training by picking the right CDL school in your area. When assessing your options, there are certain variables that you’ll want to think about before making your final choice. Location will no doubt be an issue, particularly if you have to commute from your Wareham residence. The expense will also be of importance, but picking a school based solely on price is not the optimal means to make certain you’ll receive the appropriate training. Just remember, your goal is to learn the knowledge and skills that will allow you to pass the CDL exams and become a qualified truck driver. So keeping that purpose in mind, just how do you choose a truck driving school? The answer to that question 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 CDL license you will eventually need.
Which Commercial Drivers License Will You Need?
To drive commercial vehicles legally within the United States and Wareham MA, an operator needs to obtain a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The 3 license classes that a person can apply for are Class A, Class B and Class C. Since the subject of this article is how to pick a truck driver school, we will discuss Class A and B licenses. What distinguishes 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 explanations for the two classes.
Class A CDL. A Class A CDL is needed to operate any vehicle that has a GCWR of more than 26,000 lbs., including a towed vehicle of more 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 needed 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. 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 Commercial Drivers Licenses may also need endorsements to operate certain kinds of vehicles, for example school or passenger buses. And a Class A license holder, with the appropriate required endorsements, may operate any vehicle that a Class B license holder is authorized to operate.
How to Assess a Trucking School
After you have decided which Commercial Drivers License you want to obtain, you can begin the process of assessing the Wareham MA truck driving schools that you are looking at. As already mentioned, location and cost will no doubt be your initial concerns. But it can’t be emphasized enough that they should not be your only concerns. Other issues, for example the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are similarly if not more important. So following are a few additional factors that you need to research while carrying out your due diligence before choosing, and particularly paying for, your truck driver training.
Are the Schools Accredited or Certified ? Not many truck driver schools in the Wareham MA area are accredited because of the stringent process and cost to the schools. However, certification is more prevalent and is provided by the Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI). A school is not required to become certified, but there are a number of advantages. Potential students recognize that the training will be of the highest quality, and that they will be given plenty of driving time. For example, PTDI mandates 44 hours of real driving time, not simulations or ride-alongs. So if a school’s program is certified (the program, 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 Operation? One clue to help assess the quality of a truck driving school is how long it has been in operation. A poorly reviewed or a fly by night school usually will not stay in business very long, so longevity is a plus. On the other hand, even the best of Wareham MA schools had to begin from their opening day of training, so use it as one of multiple qualifications. You can also learn what the school’s track record is concerning successful licensing and employment of its graduating students. If a school won’t supply those numbers, look elsewhere. The schools should additionally maintain associations with regional and national trucking companies. Having a large number of contacts not only confirms a quality reputation within the industry, but also bolsters their job assistance program for students. It also wouldn’t hurt to get in touch with the Massachusetts licensing authority to verify that the CDL trucking schools you are researching are in good standing.
How Good is the Training? At a minimum, the schools must be licensed in Massachusetts and employ teachers that are trained and experienced. We will discuss more about the teachers in the following segment. Also, the student to instructor ratio should not be higher than 4 to 1. If it’s any greater, then students will not be obtaining the individual attention they will need. This is particularly true concerning the one-on-one instruction for behind the wheel training. And be critical of any school that professes it can teach you to be a truck driver in a comparatively short period of time. Training to be a truck driver and to drive a tractor trailer skillfully takes time. The majority of Wareham MA schools provide 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 already mentioned, it’s essential that the teachers are qualified to teach driving techniques and experienced as both instructors and drivers. Although a number of states have minimum driving time prerequisites to qualify as an instructor, the more professional driving experience a teacher has the better. It’s also important that the teachers stay up to date with industry developments or any new regulations or changes in existing laws. Assessing teachers may be a little more intuitive than other criteria, and perhaps the best method is to check out the school and talk to 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 level of instruction and the teacher’s qualification to train them.
Sufficient Driving Time? Most importantly, an excellent 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 real time spent behind the wheel operating a truck. While the use of simulators and ride-a-longs with other students are important training methods, they are no alternative for real driving. The more training that a student gets behind the wheel, the better driver he or she will become. Although driving time varies 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. Contact the Wareham MA schools you are looking at and find out how much driving time they furnish.
Are they Independent or Captive ? It’s possible to obtain free or discounted training from some truck driver schools if you make a commitment to be a driver for a specific carrier for a defined period of time. This is referred to as contract training, and the schools that provide it are called captives. So instead of maintaining 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 giving up the flexibility to initially work wherever you choose. Clearly contract training has the potential to limit your income opportunities when starting out. But for many it may be the best way to obtain affordable training. Just be sure to find out if the Wareham MA schools you are looking at are independent or captive so that you can make an informed decision.
Is there Onsite CDL Testing? There are a number of states that will allow third party CDL testing onsite of truck driver schools for its students. If onsite testing is available in Massachusetts, 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 competing schools for test times at Massachusetts testing facilities. It is moreover an indicator that the DMV regards the authorized schools to be of a superior quality.
Are the Class Times Accessible? As previously mentioned, truck driver training is only about 1 to 2 months long. With such a short term, it’s imperative that the Wareham MA school you choose offers flexibility for both the curriculum and the scheduling of classes. For example, if you’re having a hard time learning a certain driving maneuver, then the teacher should be willing to devote more time with you until you have it mastered. And if you’re still working while attending training, then the class scheduling needs to be flexible enough to fit in working hours or other responsibilities.
Is Job Assistance Provided? Once you have received your CDL license after graduating from truck driver school, you will be impatient to begin your new profession. Make sure that the schools you are looking at have job assistance programs. Find out what their job placement percentage is and what average salary their grads start at. Also, ask which national and local trucking firms their graduates are placed with for hiring. If a school has a lower job placement rate or not many Wareham MA employers recruiting their grads, it might be a sign to look elsewhere.
Is Financial Assistance Available? Truck driver schools are similar to colleges and other Wareham MA area vocational or trade schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial assistance being offered. Find out if the schools you are examining have a financial aid department, or at a minimum someone who can help you navigate the options and forms that need to be completed.
Truck School Cost Wareham Massachusetts
Selecting the right trucking school is an essential first step to starting your new profession as a local or long distance truck driver. The skill sets taught at school will be those that mold a new career behind the wheel. There are several options offered and understanding them is crucial to a new driver’s success. You originally came to our website because of your interest in Truck School Cost and wanting information on the topic Truck Training. However, you must get the appropriate training in order to drive a big commercial vehicle in a professional and safe fashion. If you are lacking funds or financing, you might want to look into 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 enroll in an independent CDL school and have the the freedom to drive for the trucking company of your choosing, or one of many affiliated with the school. It’s your decision. But regardless of how you obtain your training, you will in the near future be joining an industry that helps our country move as a professional trucker in Wareham MA.
Truck On in These Other Massachusetts Locations
Wareham (/ˈwɛərəm/, WAIR-əm) is a town in Plymouth County, Massachusetts, United States. As of the 2010 census, the town had a population of 21,822. Wareham has long been recognized as the western point of Cape Cod.
Wareham was first settled in 1678 by Europeans as part of the towns of Plymouth and Rochester. It was officially incorporated in 1739 and named after the town of Wareham in England. Because of its geography, Wareham's early industry revolved around shipbuilding and the related industries. It also served as a resort town, with many smaller resorts scattered around the town, especially in Onset. Like Sandwich, its waterways, especially Buttermilk Bay, were considered as possible pathways for the Cape Cod Canal. Although the canal proper goes through Bourne and Sandwich, the southern approach to Buzzards Bay passes just south of the peninsulas that make up the topography of the town.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 46.3 square miles (120 km2), of which 35.8 square miles (93 km2) is land and 10.5 square miles (27 km2) is water. The total area is 22.64% water. Wareham is bordered by Marion to the southwest, Rochester to the west, Middleborough to the northwest, Carver and Plymouth to the north, and Bourne to the east. The town's localities are numerous, the most important being East Wareham, Onset, Point Independence, Wareham Center, and West Wareham. The town is just west of Cape Cod, and is 18 miles (29 km) east of New Bedford, approximately 45 miles (72 km) east of Providence, Rhode Island and 55 miles (89 km) south-southeast of Boston.
Business Results 1 - 10 of 8