How to Decide on the Right Trucker School near West Nyack New York
Congrats on your decision to become a truck driver and enroll in a CDL school near West Nyack NY. Maybe it has always been your dream to hit the open road while driving a huge tractor trailer. Or perhaps you have done some research and have discovered that an occupation as a truck driver offers excellent pay and flexible job prospects. Regardless of what your reason is, it’s important to get the appropriate training by choosing the right CDL school in your area. When evaluating your options, there are various factors that you’ll need to think about prior to making your ultimate selection. Location will no doubt be an issue, especially if you need to commute from your West Nyack home. The expense will also be of importance, but selecting a school based only on price is not the ideal means to guarantee you’ll get the proper training. Just remember, your goal is to learn the skills and knowledge that will allow you to pass the CDL exams and become a professional truck driver. So keeping that goal 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 rest of this article. But first, we are going to discuss a little bit about which commercial driver’s license you will eventually need.
Which Commercial Drivers License Will You Need?
To operate commercial vehicles lawfully within the United States and West Nyack NY, an operator needs to get a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The 3 license classes that a driver can apply for are Class A, Class B and Class C. Given that the subject of this article is how to pick a truck driver school, we will focus on 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 CDL is required to drive any vehicle that has a GCWR of more 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 required 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 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 might also need endorsements to operate specific types of vehicles, for example school or passenger buses. And a Class A license holder, with the proper needed endorsements, can drive any vehicle that a Class B licensee is authorized to drive.
How to Evaluate a CDL School
As soon as you have determined which Commercial Drivers License you wish to pursue, you can begin the process of evaluating the West Nyack NY trucking schools that you are considering. As already mentioned, location and cost will certainly be your primary concerns. But it can’t be stressed enough that they must not be your sole considerations. Other factors, for instance the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are similarly if not more important. So below are several additional factors that you need to research while conducting your due diligence before enrolling in, and especially paying for, your truck driving training.
Are the Schools Certified or Accredited ? Not many trucking schools in the West Nyack NY area are accredited due to the rigorous process and cost to the schools. However, certification is more common 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 know that the training will be of the highest caliber, and that they will be given lots of driving time. As an example, PTDI calls for 44 hours of actual driving time, not ride-alongs or simulations. 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 Business? One indicator to help evaluate 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 West Nyack NY schools had to begin from their opening day of training, so consider it as one of multiple qualifiers. You can also find out what the school’s track record is regarding successful licensing and job placement of its graduates. If a school won’t share those stats, search elsewhere. The schools should additionally maintain associations with local and national trucking companies. Having numerous 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 check with the New York licensing department to make sure 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 New York and hire teachers that are experienced and trained. We will cover more about the teachers in the following section. Also, the student to instructor proportion should not be higher than 4 to 1. If it’s any higher, then students will not be obtaining the personal 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 be a truck driver in a relatively short period of time. Training to be an operator and to drive a tractor trailer professionally requires time. The majority of West Nyack NY 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 drivers and instructors. Even though a number of states have minimum driving time requirements to qualify as an instructor, the more professional driving experience an instructor has the better. It’s also crucial that the teachers stay current with industry developments or any new regulations or changes in existing laws. Evaluating instructors might be a bit more intuitive than other standards, and possibly the ideal method is to pay a visit to the school and talk to the instructors face to face. You can also talk to a few of the students completing the training and find out if they are satisfied with the level of instruction and the teacher’s qualification to train them.
Enough Driving Time? Above all else, an excellent trucking school will furnish plenty of 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 operating a truck. Even though the use of simulators and ride-a-longs with other students are essential training tools, they are no alternative for real driving. The more training that a student receives behind the wheel, the better driver he or she will be. And even though driving time can vary between schools, a reasonable benchmark is a minimum of 32 hours. If the school is PTDI certified, it will provide a minimum of 44 hours of driving time. Get in touch with the West Nyack NY schools you are looking at and ask how much driving time they furnish.
Are they Independent or Captive ? You can obtain discounted or even free training from some truck driving 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 rather than having relationships with numerous trucking lines that they can refer their students to, captives only work with one company. The benefit is receiving free or less expensive training by giving up the flexibility to initially work wherever you have an opportunity. Clearly contract training has the potential to restrict your income opportunities when beginning your new career. But for many it may be the best way to get affordable training. Just be sure to find out if the West Nyack NY schools you are considering are independent or captive so that you can make an informed decision.
Provide CDL Testing Onsite? There are some states that will permit third party CDL testing onsite of truck driving schools for its grads. If onsite testing is allowed in New York, find out if the schools you are considering are DMV certified to provide it. One advantage is that it is more convenient than contending with graduates from competing schools for test times at New York testing facilities. It is moreover an indication that the DMV believes the authorized schools to be of a superior quality.
Are the Classes Flexible? As earlier mentioned, CDL training is only about one to two months long. With such a brief duration, it’s essential that the West Nyack NY school you choose provides flexibility for both the scheduling of classes and the curriculum. As an example, if you’re having difficulty learning a particular driving maneuver, then the instructor should be prepared to commit more time with you until you have it mastered. And if you’re still employed while going to training, then the class scheduling must be flexible enough to fit in working hours or other commitments.
Is Job Placement Provided? Once you have attained your CDL license after graduating from trucking school, you will be impatient to start your new profession. Verify that the schools you are contemplating have job placement 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 employment. If a school has a lower job placement rate or not many West Nyack NY employers recruiting their graduates, it might be a sign to search elsewhere.
Is Financial Assistance Given? Truck driving schools are similar to colleges and other West Nyack NY 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 a minimum someone who can help you navigate the options and forms that need to be submitted.
Thinking of a Truck Drivier School near West Nyack NY?
If you are considering enrolling in a CDL Training School in the West Nyack New York area, following is some interesting and perhaps useful information about the location of your new school campus.
West Nyack, New York
West Nyack is a hamlet and census-designated place in the town of Clarkstown, Rockland County, New York, United States. It is located north of Blauvelt, east of Nanuet, southwest of Valley Cottage, southeast of Bardonia, and west of Central Nyack. It is approximately 18 miles (29 km) north of New York City. The population was 3,439 at the 2010 census.
As of the census of 2000, there were 3,282 people, 1,107 households, and 892 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 1,125.9 per square mile (435.5/km²). There were 1,132 housing units at an average density of 388.3/sq mi (150.2/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 88.03% White, 1.98% African American, 0.03% Native American, 7.59% Asian, 0.98% from other races, and 1.40% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.58% of the population.
There were 1,107 households out of which 36.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 70.8% were married couples living together, 6.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 19.4% were non-families. 14.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.95 and the average family size was 3.27.
How To Get Truck Driving License West Nyack NY
Selecting the ideal truck driving school is a critical first step to starting your new vocation as a long distance or local truck driver. The skills that you will learn 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 if you are going to succeed as an operator. You originally came to our website because of your interest in How To Get Truck Driving License. However, you must receive the appropriate training in order to drive a big commercial vehicle in a safe and professional fashion. If you are short on cash or financing, you may want to think about a captive school. You will pay a lower or in some cases no tuition in exchange for driving for their contracted carrier. Or you can select an independent trucker school and have the option of driving for the trucking company of your choosing, or one of many affiliated with the school. It’s your choice. But regardless of how you receive your training, you will soon be joining a profession that helps America move as a professional trucker in West Nyack NY.
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