New To Trucking CDL class. How long?

DavidBigDJ

New Member
I just finished CDL School at Miller Motte Technical College. Its a 160 hour course. Pretty much as much backing time as you want. Only 8 people in the class. 2 trucks, 8 people.
 

SueAnn

Well-Known Member
Supporter
OK guys if have looked into several private CDL classes in So. Cal ranging from 20 to 160 hours. Do you think that 20 hours is enough? It is a lot cheaper. Still considering company sponsored ones, but don't like the commitment.
I went to one of the top schools in the area. I had 160 hours and was turned loose on the road. I knew nothing. All they teach you is how to get your licence. There is so much more to the job than that. I was fortunate, I had the instructor to call when I had a question.
My advice is....get as much training as you can before you go out on the road. It will save your life and probably some others.
I wish you much luck and the forum is here if you have any questions. :x3:
 

mndriver

curmudgeon extraordinare
Supporter
Getting your CDL is entirely different than getting trained to be a truck driver.

Getting trained to adequately be considered a rookie is 12-24 months. Skilled and a driver, more like 48-60 months and a trucker is 72+ months.
 

SueAnn

Well-Known Member
Supporter
They rank these things?
In Canada they do. The one I went too is recognized by most of the trucking companies, so I had my pick of where I went when I left school. I choose a company that had it's own training program which helped prepare me to be a safer driver when I went out on my own. :x3:
 

ironpony

Professional Pot-Stirrer
Supporter
I went to one of the top schools in the area. I had 160 hours and was turned loose on the road. I knew nothing. All they teach you is how to get your licence. There is so much more to the job than that. I was fortunate, I had the instructor to call when I had a question.
My advice is....get as much training as you can before you go out on the road. It will save your life and probably some others.
I wish you much luck and the forum is here if you have any questions. :x3:
I went to what I considered to be a good driving school, after visiting all the schools in my area. Got a quality third-party schooling.

Got into Prime's driver finishing training (have to have a CDL at that point.) It was then painfully obvious how much more the students got at Prime's in-house CDL program, than what I received paying a lot of money for a 160-hour program. Training time behind the wheel with an instructor is effin' expensive. Getting a student an adequate amount of time to get past a skills test is vastly different than being a proficient truck driver - something that Prime financed by joining a CDL instructor with a student in a truck that was generating revenue.
 

Ontario Outlaw

Hozer Witta Hood
Supporter
In Canada they do. The one I went too is recognized by most of the trucking companies, so I had my pick of where I went when I left school. I choose a company that had it's own training program which helped prepare me to be a safer driver when I went out on my own. :x3:
What DO you do in a twucking school?
I’m curious
 

DavidBigDJ

New Member
I went to what I considered to be a good driving school, after visiting all the schools in my area. Got a quality third-party schooling.

Got into Prime's driver finishing training (have to have a CDL at that point.) It was then painfully obvious how much more the students got at Prime's in-house CDL program, than what I received paying a lot of money for a 160-hour program. Training time behind the wheel with an instructor is effin' expensive. Getting a student an adequate amount of time to get past a skills test is vastly different than being a proficient truck driver - something that Prime financed by joining a CDL instructor with a student in a truck that was generating revenue.


I totally agree. Miller Motte is a fantastic school and the teachers/trainers are good. But you said it best, they teach you enough to pass your CDL exam. Nothing more. I aced my exam, but know I am not ready to be on my own driving a.truck yet.
 

Ontario Outlaw

Hozer Witta Hood
Supporter
I totally agree. Miller Motte is a fantastic school and the teachers/trainers are good. But you said it best, they teach you enough to pass your CDL exam. Nothing more. I aced my exam, but know I am not ready to be on my own driving a.truck yet.
Driving a truck is easy peasy. Just don’t hit expensive things. You’ll be fine
 

Rigjockey

In Gord we trust!
Supporter
I went to one of the top schools a college.
They taught me how to drive very well. What they did not teach about was the industry, How it works, what is expected, etc.

I was working in a union shop and let me tell ya, trucking was a complete culture shock as far as hours worked, breaks (that do not exist).

I quit my first company and still had my union job.

I joined another company and gave up my union job and the trucking company and I mutually agreed this was not for me.

I started at a third company that was pretty rag-tag and full of misfits, That was a good fit for me.:rolllaugh:I quit that job 5 times! and got re-hired 5 times :rolllaugh:

My Uncle invited me to run team with him and that is where I really learned about the industry and the culture of trucking.
 

SueAnn

Well-Known Member
Supporter
I went to what I considered to be a good driving school, after visiting all the schools in my area. Got a quality third-party schooling.

Got into Prime's driver finishing training (have to have a CDL at that point.) It was then painfully obvious how much more the students got at Prime's in-house CDL program, than what I received paying a lot of money for a 160-hour program. Training time behind the wheel with an instructor is effin' expensive. Getting a student an adequate amount of time to get past a skills test is vastly different than being a proficient truck driver - something that Prime financed by joining a CDL instructor with a student in a truck that was generating revenue.
That's the type of company I joined out of school. I totally see what you mean and would have done it differently if I'd known and saved $10, 000 of my own money.
Having said that, it was the best decision I've made in a long time. :cool-61:
 

SueAnn

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Driving a truck is easy peasy. Just don’t hit expensive things. You’ll be fine
Or let anyone help you back up!
When I first started driving, I was in Tennessee around the 4th of July. 6 am on a very dark morning, three guys are helping me backing into an indoor dock that I can't see. The guy at the front tells me to pull forward, so I did. Next thing I heard this bang....the back door left the truck.
When I looked in my mirror, it looked like someone had took it off and leaned it on the truck.
Having very little sleep, I started to laugh and couldn't stop.
To make a long story short, it was the most fun day I've had in my career so far. I met a lot of people in the small town, while the guys uncle's sons fixed the door and had a really great day.
IMG_0300.JPGIMG_0307.JPG
 

nan

Well-Known Member
Supporter
I went to one of those business schools that added a CDL program. The instructor was basically a female Mike Mike (former Schneider turned O/O, the only difference being she was likeable) and the director was a former UPS driver turned UPS manager.

Dunno if that meant I got better or worse instruction than most but I feel like I hit the ground running not having to do OTR or sit on my butt waiting for dispatch orders with a low annual salary. And I never teamed either.

I also don't find trucking itself to be particularly difficult, but then again I've been mostly doing it at night ever since the beginning. But one of my friends is a day driver who tried it at night and couldn't cope with not seeing her trailer. 😂

The only challenge for me really is doing as many loads as possible to make the most $ and still getting back within hours so you're not sitting along the road waiting for a relief driver. So far so good, and my new self-applied challenge has been doing it under 12.

Knock on wood but I've yet to need a relief driver in the past 4 years and I ain't about to start now. 😏

(Watch me need one Monday)
 

SueAnn

Well-Known Member
Supporter
What DO you do in a twucking school?
I’m curious
In school they teach you the laws in both countries, the braking system and how it works, what to look for, etc. Most of it is practice driving, hooking and unhooking. Not enough time is spent on backing. Had to learn that on my own. They also taught me to parallel park the truck for the exam. There was first aid, tow motor licence and I'm forgetting the rest of it.
The course took 2 months and $10,000.
 
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