Category Archives: Tennessee

How To Get CDL Class B Tazewell TN

How to Decide on the Right Trucking School near Tazewell Tennessee

long haul tractor trailer in Tazewell TNCongrats on your decision to become a trucker and enroll in a trucking school near Tazewell TN. Maybe it has always been your dream to hit the open highway while driving a monster tractor trailer. Or perhaps you have done some analysis and have discovered that an occupation as a truck driver provides excellent income and flexible job prospects. No matter what your reason is, it’s essential to receive the proper training by picking the right CDL school in your area. When evaluating your options, there are several factors that you’ll need to think about prior to making your ultimate choice. Location will no doubt be important, particularly if you have to commute from your Tazewell home. The expense will also be of importance, but choosing a school based exclusively on price is not the ideal method to guarantee you’ll get the right education. Just remember, your objective is to master the skills and knowledge that will allow you to pass the CDL examinations and become a professional 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 remainder of this article. But first, we are going to talk a little bit about which CDL license you will eventually need.

Which CDL Will You Require?

tanker truck in Tazewell TNTo drive commercial vehicles legally within the USA and Tazewell TN, an operator needs to get a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The three license classes that a person 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 address Class A and Class B licenses. What distinguishes each class of CDL is the kind of vehicle that the driver can operate together with the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) or GCWR (Gross Combination Weight Rating). Below are short explanations for the 2 classes.

Class A CDL. A Class A Commercial Drivers License is needed to operate any vehicle that has a GCWR of greater than 26,000 lbs., including a towed vehicle of more 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 needed to drive single vehicles having a GVWR of greater than 26,000 lbs., or a GCWR of greater than 26,000 lbs. including a towed vehicle weighing up to 10,000 lbs. Several 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 CDLs might also need endorsements to operate certain types of vehicles, for example passenger or school buses. And a Class A licensee, with the proper required endorsements, may drive any vehicle that a Class B license holder is qualified to operate.

How to Assess a CDL School

Questions to ask Tazewell TN truck driving schoolsOnce you have determined which Commercial Drivers License you would like to pursue, you can begin the undertaking of researching the Tazewell TN trucking schools that you are looking at. As earlier discussed, location and cost will certainly be your initial concerns. But it can’t be stressed enough that they must not be your only considerations. Other variables, such as the reputations of the schools or the experience of the instructors are equally if not more important. So below are a few more 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 Certified or Accredited ? Not many truck driving schools in the Tazewell TN area are accredited due to the rigorous process and expense to the schools. On the other hand, certification is more common 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 caliber, and that they will be given lots 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 program is certified (the program, not the school is certified), students know that the curriculum and training will meet the very high standards set by PTDI.

How Long in Operation? One indicator to help measure the quality of a truck driving school is how long it has been in operation. A negatively rated or a fly by night school typically will not stay in business very long, so longevity is a plus. However, even the best of Tazewell TN schools had to begin from their first day of training, so use it as one of multiple qualifiers. You can also learn what the school’s track record is regarding successful licensing and job placement of its graduating students. If a school won’t supply those numbers, look elsewhere. The schools should also maintain associations with regional and national trucking companies. Having a large number of contacts not only confirms a superior reputation within the industry, but also bolsters their job assistance program for students. It also wouldn’t be a bad idea to check with the Tennessee licensing department to make sure that the CDL trucking schools you are considering are in good standing.

How Good is the Training? At a minimum, the schools must be licensed in Tennessee and employ instructors that are trained and experienced. We will talk more about the instructors in the next segment. In addition, the student to instructor proportion should be no higher than 4 to 1. If it’s any greater, then students will not be receiving the individual attention they will need. This is especially true concerning the one-on-one instruction for behind the wheel training. And look out for any school that professes it can train you to be a truck driver in a comparatively short time period. Learning to be an operator and to drive a tractor trailer professionally requires time. Most Tazewell TN schools provide training programs that range from three weeks to as long as two months, depending on the license class or kind of vehicle.

How Experienced are the Instructors? As previously mentioned, it’s essential that the instructors are trained to teach driving methods and experienced as both instructors and drivers. Although several states have minimum driving time prerequisites to qualify as an instructor, the more successful driving experience an instructor has the better. It’s also vital that the instructors stay current with industry developments or any new laws or changes in regulations. Evaluating teachers might be a bit more intuitive than other criteria, and possibly the best approach is to check out the school and speak with the instructors in person. You can also talk to a few of the students completing the training and ask if they are happy with the level of instruction and the teacher’s qualification to train them.

Plenty of Driving Time? Above all else, a great truck driver school will furnish 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. While the use of ride-a-longs with other students and simulators are necessary training tools, they are no substitute for actual driving. The more instruction that a student receives behind the wheel, the better driver he or she will become. And even though driving time can vary among schools, a reasonable benchmark is a minimum of 32 hours. If the school is PTDI certified, it will provide no less than 44 hours of driving time. Contact the Tazewell TN schools you are considering and find out how much driving time they provide.

Are they Captive or Independent ? You can receive discounted or even free training from certain truck driver schools if you enter into an agreement to drive for a specific carrier for a defined amount of time. This is referred to as contract training, and the schools that provide it are called captives. So rather than having associations with a wide range of trucking lines that they can place their graduates with, captives only refer to one company. The benefit is receiving less expensive or even free training by surrendering the flexibility to initially be a driver wherever you choose. Obviously contract training has the potential to limit your income opportunities when starting out. But for some it may be the best way to obtain affordable training. Just remember to inquire if the Tazewell TN schools you are contemplating are independent or captive so that you can make an informed decision.

Provide CDL Testing Onsite? There are several states that will allow third party CDL testing onsite of truck driver schools for its grads. If onsite testing is permitted in Tennessee, ask if the schools you are looking at are DMV certified to offer it. One benefit is that it is more convenient than contending with graduates from other schools for test times at Tennessee testing locations. It is also an indicator that the DMV views the authorized schools to be of a higher quality.

Are the Class Times Flexible? As previously noted, truck driving training is only about one to two months in length. With such a brief term, it’s essential that the Tazewell TN school you enroll in provides flexibility for both the curriculum and the scheduling of classes. For example, if you’re having difficulty learning a certain driving maneuver, then the teacher should be willing to dedicate more time with you until you are proficient. 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 responsibilities.

Is Job Assistance Provided? The moment you have obtained your commercial driver’s license after graduating from trucking school, you will be keen to begin your new profession. Verify 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 local and national trucking firms their graduates are placed with for employment. If a school has a lower job placement rate or not many Tazewell TN employers recruiting their graduates, it might be a clue to search elsewhere.

Is Financial Aid Available? Truck driving schools are much like colleges and other Tazewell TN area technical or vocational schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial aid being offered. Ask if the schools you are assessing have a financial assistance department, or at a minimum someone who can help you understand the options and forms that must be submitted.

Thinking of a Truck Drivier School near Tazewell TN?

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

Tazewell, Tennessee

Tazewell is a town in and the county seat of Claiborne County, Tennessee, United States.[5] The population was 2,165 at the 2000 census and 2,218 at the 2010 census. The town is named for Henry Tazewell (1753–1799), a U.S. senator from Virginia.[6]

In 1750, Dr. Thomas Walker of Virginia publicized the location of Cumberland Gap, which brought a stream of long hunters down the Clinch and Powell valleys into what is now Claiborne County.[7] The land at the time was part of Cherokee and Shawano hunting grounds,[8] and hostile attacks by members of these two tribes were not uncommon. To protect themselves, hunters, fur traders and early settlers erected a series of small forts and stations along the Powell and Clinch valleys. One such station, known as Fort Butler, was located just west of modern Tazewell.[9]

Among the earliest settlers in the Tazewell area was John Hunt (1750–1822), a militia captain who would later be instrumental in the founding of Huntsville, Alabama. In 1804, three years after the creation of Claiborne County, Tazewell was chosen as the county seat due in part to Hunt's influence (although a local legend states that the residents of Tazewell's rival for the seat, Springdale, were too intoxicated to vote on the day of selection). Hunt was named the county's first sheriff, and the government met at his house until a courthouse was constructed.[10] The original courthouse was a wooden structure which had hitching posts for horses in front.

How To Get CDL Class B Tazewell TN

Tazewell TN long haul truckPicking the right truck driver school is a critical first step to launching your new profession as a long distance or local truck driver. The skills taught at school will be those that mold a new career behind the wheel. There are several options offered and understanding them is vital to a new driver’s success.  You originally came to our website because of your interest in How To Get CDL Class B.  However, you must get the necessary training in order to drive a big commercial vehicle in a safe and professional manner. If you are lacking money or financing, you might want to think about a captive school. You will pay a reduced or even no tuition in exchange for driving for their contracted carrier. Or you can select an independent CDL 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 choice. But regardless of how you receive your training, you will soon be joining an industry that helps our country move as a professional trucker in Tazewell TN.

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