How to Find a Truck Driver School near Overton Nevada
Congratulations on your decision to become a trucker and enroll in a CDL school near Overton NV. Maybe it has always been your fantasy to hit the open road while driving a monster tractor trailer. Or perhaps you have conducted some analysis and have discovered that a career as a truck driver provides good pay and flexible job opportunities. Regardless of what your reason is, it’s important to receive the proper training by enrolling in the right CDL school in your area. When evaluating your options, there are several variables that you’ll need to examine prior to making your final selection. Location will undoubtedly be important, especially if you have to commute from your Overton residence. The expense will also be important, but selecting a school based only on price is not the ideal means to make sure you’ll obtain 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 qualified truck driver. So keeping that purpose in mind, just how do you pick 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 review a little bit about which CDL license you will eventually need.
Which Commercial Drivers License Should You Get?
In order to operate commercial vehicles legally in Nevada and within the United States, a driver 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 topic of this article is how to select a truck driver school near Overton NV, we will address Class A and Class B licenses. What differentiates each class of CDL is the kind of vehicle that the driver can operate as well as the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) or GCWR (Gross Combination Weight Rating). Below are short descriptions for the two classes.
Class A CDL. A Class A Commercial Drivers License is needed 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 needed to operate 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 specific kinds of vehicles, for example passenger or school buses. And a Class A license holder, with the appropriate needed endorsements, may drive any vehicle that a Class B license holder is authorized to operate.
How to Evaluate a CDL School
After you have decided which CDL you would like to pursue, you can start the process of assessing the Overton NV truck driving schools that you are looking at. As already discussed, location and cost will certainly be your initial considerations. But it can’t be emphasized enough that they must not be your sole concerns. Other variables, such as the experience of the instructors or the reputations of the schools are similarly or even more important. So below are a few additional factors that you should research while performing your due diligence prior to selecting, and particularly paying for, your truck driver training.
Are the Schools Accredited or Certified ? Very few Overton NV trucking schools are accredited because of the demanding process and cost to the schools. On the other hand, 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. Prospective students know that the training will be of the highest standard, and that they will receive an ample amount of driving time. For example, PTDI requires 44 hours of real driving time, not ride-alongs or simulations. So if a school’s course is certified (the course, not the school is certified), students know that the training and curriculum will comply with the very high standards set by PTDI.
How Long in Operation? One indicator to help measure the quality of a truck driver school is how long it has been in operation. A negatively rated or a fly by night school usually will not stay in business very long, so longevity is a plus. Having said that, even the best of Overton NV schools had to begin from their opening day of training, so consider it as one of multiple qualifiers. You can also learn what the school’s track record is concerning successful licensing and job placement of its graduates. If a school won’t share those stats, search elsewhere. The schools should also maintain relationships with local and national trucking companies. Having a large number of contacts not only points to an excellent reputation within the profession, but also bolsters their job assistance program for graduates. It also wouldn’t be a bad idea to check with the Nevada licensing authority to confirm that the CDL trucking schools you are reviewing are in compliance.
How Effective is the Training? At a minimum, the schools should be licensed in Nevada and hire instructors that are experienced and trained. We will cover more about the teachers in the following segment. Also, the student to instructor proportion should be no higher than 4 to 1. If it’s any higher, then students will not be getting the personalized instruction they will need. This is particularly 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 period of time. Training to be an operator and to drive a tractor trailer skillfully takes time. Most Overton NV schools provide training courses that run from three weeks to as long as two months, based on the class of license or kind of vehicle.
How Good are the Trainers? As previously mentioned, it’s important that the teachers are trained to teach driving techniques and experienced as both instructors and drivers. Even though several states have minimum driving time prerequisites to be certified as an instructor, the more professional driving experience a teacher has the better. It’s also important that the teachers keep current with industry developments or any new regulations or changes in existing laws. Evaluating instructors may be a bit more intuitive than other criteria, and possibly the ideal method is to pay a visit to the Overton NV school and speak with the instructors in person. You can also talk to some of the students going through the training and ask if they are happy with the level of instruction and the teacher’s ability to train them.
Plenty of Driving Time? Most importantly, a good trucking school will provide plenty 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. Even though the use of simulators and ride-a-longs with other students are essential training methods, they are no alternative for actual driving. The more instruction that a student gets behind the wheel, the better driver she or he will be. Although driving time differs between schools, a good standard is a minimum of 32 hours. If the school is PTDI certified, it will furnish at least 44 hours of driving time. Get in touch with the Overton NV schools you are looking at and ask how much driving time they furnish.
Are they Independent or Captive ? You can obtain free or discounted training from a number of Overton NV trucking schools if you make a commitment to be a driver for a specified carrier for a defined amount of time. This is referred to as contract training, and the schools that provide it are called captives. So instead of having relationships with numerous trucking lines that they can place their graduates with, captives only refer to one company. The tradeoff is receiving less expensive or even free training by giving up the flexibility to initially work wherever you choose. Obviously contract training has the potential to restrict your income opportunities when beginning your new career. But for some it may be the only way to receive affordable training. Just remember to ask if the schools you are looking at are independent or captive so that you can make an informed decision.
Provide Onsite CDL Testing? There are several states that will permit third party CDL testing onsite of trucking schools for its graduates. If onsite testing is allowed in Nevada, ask if the Overton NV schools you are considering are DMV certified to provide it. One advantage is that it is more convenient than competing with graduates of competing schools for test times at Nevada testing centers. It is moreover an indicator that the DMV considers the approved schools to be of a higher quality.
Are the Classes Flexible? As formerly noted, CDL training is only about 1 to 2 months in length. With such a short duration, it’s essential that the Overton NV school you choose provides flexibility for both the curriculum and the scheduling of classes. As an example, if you’re having difficulty learning a certain driving maneuver, then the instructor should be prepared to devote more time with you until you are proficient. And if you’re still employed while attending training, then the class scheduling must be flexible enough to accommodate working hours or other commitments.
Is Job Placement Offered? As soon as you have obtained your CDL license after graduating from truck driver school, you will be impatient to start your new profession in Overton NV. Verify that the schools you are looking at have job assistance programs. Ask what their job placement percentage is and what average salary their graduates start at. Also, ask which local and national trucking firms their graduates are referred to for employment. If a school has a lower job placement rate or few employers recruiting their grads, it might be a sign to search elsewhere.
Is Financial Assistance Given? Truck driving schools are similar to colleges and other vocational or trade schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial aid being available. Find out if the schools you are examining have a financial assistance department, or at least someone who can help you get through the options and forms that must be submitted in Overton NV.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Tractor Trailer Operator?When prepping to interview for a Trucking job, it's advantageous to reflect on questions you might be asked. Among the things that hiring managers often ask truck driving candidates is "What drove you to pick trucking as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not only the private reasons you might have for becoming a trucking operator, but also what characteristics and talents you have that make you exceptional at your profession. You will likely be asked questions relating exclusively to trucking, along with a significant number of routine interview questions, so you must prepare some strategies about how you would like to address them. Since there are numerous variables that go into choosing a career, you can address this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When formulating an answer, aim to include the reasons the work appeals to you as well as the talents you possess that make you an exceptional truck driver and the best candidate for the job. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but write down a few concepts and talking points that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample answers can assist you to develop your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to impress the interviewer.
Choose the Best Trucking School Overton NV
Choosing the ideal truck driver school is an important first step to starting your new profession as a long distance or local truck driver. The skill sets that you will learn at school will be those that mold a new career behind the wheel. There are several options offered and understanding them is critical if you are going to succeed as an operator. Most importantly, you must get the necessary training in order to operate a big commercial vehicle in a safe and professional fashion. If you are lacking cash or financing, you might need to think about a captive school. You will pay a reduced or in some cases no tuition in exchange for driving for their contracted carrier. Or you can enroll in an independent school and have the the freedom to drive for the trucking company of your choice, or one of several affiliated with the school. It’s your decision. But regardless of how you receive your training, you will in the near future be part of a profession that helps America move as a professional truck driver in Overton NV.
A Bit About Overton Nevada
Lake Mead is a lake on the Colorado River, about 24 mi (39 km) from the Las Vegas Strip, southeast of the city of Las Vegas, Nevada, in the states of Nevada and Arizona. It is the largest reservoir in the United States in terms of water capacity. Formed by the Hoover Dam, the reservoir serves water to the states of Arizona, California, and Nevada, providing sustenance to nearly 20 million people and large areas of farmland.
At maximum capacity, Lake Mead is 112 miles (180 km) long, 532 feet (162 m) at its greatest depth, has a surface elevation of 1,221.4 feet (372.3 m) above sea level and 247 square miles (640 km2) of surface area, and contains 26.12 million acre feet (32.22 km3) of water.
The lake has not reached full capacity, however, since 1983 due to a combination of drought and increased water demand. As of August 2017, Lake Mead was at approximately 40% of full capacity with 10 million acre-feet of held water. It has been smaller than Lake Powell (the second largest US reservoir when both are full) since 2013.
The lake was named after Elwood Mead, who was the commissioner of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation from 1924 to 1936, during the planning and construction of the Boulder Canyon Project that created the dam and lake. Lake Mead was established as the Boulder Dam Recreation Area in 1936 administrated by the National Park Service. The name was changed to the Lake Mead National Recreation Area in 1964, and Lake Mohave and the Shivwits Plateau were added to its jurisdiction. Both lakes and the surrounding area offer year-round recreation options.
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