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Become a Truck Driver | Truck Driving Schools Wartrace TN

How to Select a Truck Driving School near Wartrace Tennessee

Wartrace TN truck driving school campusCongrats on your decision to become a trucker and enroll in a trucking school near Wartrace TN. Perhaps it has always been your ambition to hit the open road while operating a big ole tractor trailer. Or perhaps you have conducted some analysis and have discovered that an occupation as a truck driver provides good wages and flexible job opportunities. Whatever your reason is, it’s essential to get the proper training by picking the right CDL school in your area. When assessing your options, there are certain factors that you’ll need to examine prior to making your ultimate choice. Location will undoubtedly be important, especially if you have to commute from your Wartrace residence. The cost will also be important, but picking a school based solely on price is not the best means to ensure you’ll obtain the appropriate training. Just remember, your goal is to master the skills and knowledge that will allow you to pass the CDL exams and become a qualified truck driver. So keeping that target in mind, just how do you select a truck driving school? That is what we are going to address 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 Should You Get?

long haul tractor trailer in Wartrace TNIn order to operate commercial vehicles lawfully within the USA and Wartrace TN, an operator needs to attain a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The three classes of licenses that a driver can qualify for are Class A, Class B and Class C. Since the topic of this article is how to select a truck driving 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 descriptions of the two classes.

Class A CDL. A Class A CDL is needed to operate any vehicle that has a GCWR of greater than 26,000 lbs., including a towed vehicle of greater than 10,000 lbs. Some 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 Commercial Drivers License is needed to operate 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 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 might also require endorsements to operate certain types of vehicles, for instance passenger or school buses. And a Class A license holder, with the proper needed endorsements, can drive any vehicle that a Class B licensee is qualified to drive.

How to Assess a Trucking School

Questions to ask Wartrace TN truck driving schoolsWhen you have decided which CDL you would like to pursue, you can begin the undertaking of assessing the Wartrace TN truck driving schools that you are considering. As already mentioned, location and cost will certainly be your initial considerations. But it can’t be emphasized enough that they should not be your only concerns. Other factors, including the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are equally if not more important. So below are a few additional points that you need to research while conducting your due diligence before enrolling in, and especially paying for, your truck driving training.

Are the Schools Accredited or Certified ? Not many truck driving schools in the Wartrace TN area are accredited due to 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 several advantages. Prospective students recognize that the training will be of the highest quality, and that they will be given plenty of driving time. As an 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 curriculum and training will meet the very high benchmarks set by PTDI.

How Long in Business? One clue to help evaluate the quality of a trucking school is how long it has been in business. A poorly reviewed or a fly by night school usually will not stay in business very long, so longevity is a plus. However, even the best of Wartrace TN schools had to start from their first day of training, so consider it as one of several qualifiers. You can also learn what the school’s track record is pertaining to successful licensing and job placement of its graduates. If a school won’t supply those numbers, search elsewhere. The schools should additionally maintain associations with regional and national trucking firms. Having a large number of contacts not only affirms a quality reputation within the industry, but also boosts their job assistance program for students. It also wouldn’t hurt to check with the Tennessee licensing department to confirm that the CDL trucking schools you are reviewing are in compliance.

How Effective is the Training? At a minimum, the schools must be licensed in Tennessee and hire instructors 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 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 be critical of any school that claims it can train you to drive trucks in a comparatively short period of time. Training to be an operator and to drive a tractor trailer skillfully takes time. Most Wartrace TN schools provide training programs that run from 3 weeks to as long as two months, based on the license class or kind of vehicle.

How Good are the Teachers? As previously mentioned, it’s essential that the teachers are trained to teach driving methods and experienced as both drivers and instructors. Even though several 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. Evaluating teachers 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 instructors in person. You can also speak with a few of the students going through the training and find out if they are satisfied with the level of instruction and the teacher’s qualification to train them.

How Much Driving Time? Most importantly, an excellent truck driving 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 driving a truck. Although 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 receives behind the wheel, the better driver she or he will become. Although driving time fluctuates between schools, a reasonable standard is 32 hours at a minimum. If the school is PTDI certified, it will furnish no less than 44 hours of driving time. Check with the Wartrace TN schools you are considering and find out how much driving time they furnish.

Are they Captive or Independent ? It’s possible to receive discounted or even free training from certain trucking schools if you make a commitment to drive for a particular 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 a wide range of trucking lines that they can place their graduates with, captives only refer to one company. The tradeoff 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 reduce your income prospects when starting out. But for some it may be the best way to receive affordable training. Just be sure to inquire if the Wartrace TN schools you are considering are independent or captive so that you can make an informed decision.

Provide Onsite CDL Testing? There are several states that will permit 3rd party CDL testing onsite of truck driver schools for its grads. If onsite testing is available in Tennessee, find out if the schools you are looking at are DMV certified to offer it. One benefit is that it is more accommodating than contending with graduates from competing schools for test times at Tennessee testing facilities. It is moreover an indicator that the DMV considers the authorized schools to be of a higher quality.

Are the Class Times Convenient? As formerly mentioned, truck driver training is only about one to two months long. With such a brief term, it’s important that the Wartrace TN 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 certain driving maneuver, then the teacher should be willing to spend more time with you until you have it mastered. And if you’re still working while going to training, then the class scheduling must be flexible enough to fit in working hours or other obligations.

Is Job Placement Provided? As soon as you have received your CDL license after graduating from trucking school, you will be eager to begin your new career. Verify that the schools you are contemplating have job placement programs. Ask what their job placement rate is and what average salary their grads start at. Also, find out which national and local trucking companies their graduates are placed with for employment. If a school has a poor job placement rate or few Wartrace TN employers recruiting their graduates, it might be a sign to search elsewhere.

Is Financial Assistance Available? Trucking schools are comparable to colleges and other Wartrace TN area technical or vocational schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial aid being offered. Find out if the schools you are examining have a financial aid department, or at a minimum someone who can help you get through the options and forms that must be submitted.

Enrolling in a Truck Driving School near Wartrace TN?

If you are considering enrolling in a CDL Training School in the Wartrace Tennessee area, following is some interesting and perhaps useful information about the location of your new school campus.

Wartrace, Tennessee

Wartrace is a town in Bedford County, Tennessee, United States. The population was 548 at the 2000 census and 651 at the 2010 census. It is located northeast of Shelbyville. The downtown area is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as the Wartrace Historic District.

Wartrace is a hub of the Tennessee Walking Horse industry and has been nicknamed "the cradle of the Tennessee Walking Horse". It is home to the Wartrace Horse Show, held annually since 1906, and the Tennessee Walking Horse National Museum has been headquartered in downtown Wartrace since 2012.[6]

The name "Wartrace" is rooted in a Native American trail that once passed through the area. The town, initially known as "Wartrace Depot," was established in the early 1850s as a stop on the newly constructed Nashville and Chattanooga Railroad.[2]

Pick the Ideal CDL School Wartrace TN

tractor trailer hauling construction materials in Wartrace TNPicking the ideal truck driving school is an important first step to starting your new vocation as a local or long distance truck driver. The skill sets taught at school will be those that forge a new career behind the wheel. There are a number of options offered and understanding them is critical to a new driver’s success. But first and foremost, you must obtain the appropriate training in order to operate a large commercial vehicle in a safe and professional fashion. If you are lacking money 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 choose an independent trucking school and have the the freedom to drive for the trucking firm of your choice, or one of many associated with the school. It’s your choice. But regardless of how you get your training, you will in the near future be entering an industry that helps America move as a professional trucker in Wartrace TN.

More Trucking Locations in Tennessee

  • Become a Truck Driver | Truck Driving Schools Luray TN
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