What is a Commercial Drivers License (CDL)
Class A CDL License
In short, a Class A Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) shows carriers and employers that you are a certified and competent licensed Professional Truck Driver. Operating certain commercial motor vehicles requires specialized skills and knowledge.
What type of CDL do I need?
While the type of license is dependent on the branch of work you’re looking to pursue, Roadmaster courses are geared towards the Class A CDL license , which is required of over-the-road (OTR) Professional Truck Drivers.
Why do I need a Class A CDL License?
The Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Act’s goal is to improve highway safety by ensuring that drivers of large trucks and buses are qualified to operate those vehicles and to remove unsafe and unqualified drivers from the highways. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has developed and issued standards for testing and licensing commercial motor vehicle drivers.
Among other things, the standards require states to issue a Class A CDL to a commercial motor vehicle driver only after the driver passes knowledge and skills tests administered by the state related to the type of vehicle to be operated. Drivers need a CDL license if they drive interstate, intrastate, or foreign commerce.
How do I get my Commercial Driver’s License?
States are able to issue a CDL license only after a written and driving test have been given by the state or approved testing facility.
It’s important to train for your CDL exam for two reasons
- The test itself can be extremely difficult to pass without the proper training.
- Many carriers won’t hire a candidate without proper training, even if you’ve passed the CDL exam.
Standard Rules for Getting Your CDL
- Stay healthy: Driving long distances requires focus and good health. The trucking lifestyle can be demanding, and it’s important that you’re in shape enough to meet the responsibilities of the role. Physical examinations are mandatory for most CDL seekers.
- Don’t do drugs: Beyond the obvious negative impacts that drugs have on your life, obtaining a CDL requires the successful completion of a five-stage drug test. Random drug tests are possible for all drivers so long as they hold their CDL. Consider the safety of yourself and others on the road. Many carriers are transitioning to hair follicle test that look back up to 90 days for drug usage.
- Keep a clean driving record: Schools and carriers alike look for drivers who have proven to be skilled and safe on the road. Unsafe or unlawful acts and violations can prevent you from obtaining a CDL. To learn more about what disqualifies a driver, view the FMCSA’s website here.
- Be of age: Drivers must be at least 18 years of age to be employed intrastate (within your own state) and at least 21 to drive interstate (across state lines).
Change Your JOB, Change Your LIFE in Just 3-4 Weeks!
You can train for a new career as a Professional Truck Driver in just 3-4 weeks at Roadmaster Drivers School. Get your Class A CDL training driving the best equipment in the industry in real-world conditions. Average is for others, become a Roadmaster today!
Truck Driver Training at Roadmaster
All of Roadmaster’s nationwide locations follow strict training and safety guidelines. You will need to complete 160 training hours in order to qualify for your Class A CDL license. Here is a look at the training that you will receive during that time at Roadmaster.
You will train on the following areas in the classroom during the beginning portion of your training
- Pre-trip Truck Familiarization
- Basic Vehicle Controls and Safety
- Visual Search, Lane Changes, Communicating, Speed Management & Space Management
- Hazard Awareness, Driving in Various Conditions, Railroad Crossings, Driving Emergencies, Antilock Braking System, Skid Control and Recovery, and Accident Procedures
- Transporting Cargo
- Combination Vehicle Safety and Accident Avoidance
- Hours of Service, Logging & Trip Planning
- Pre-trip Inspection
- Straightline Backing
- Practice Tests for CDL License Exam
After classroom preparation you will climb in to the cab of a semi-truck to be taught the following:
- Visual Pre-Trip Inspection
- Straightline Backing
- Trailer Backing Skills for multiple scenarios
- Basic operation of a manual and automatic transmission truck.
- Manual Transmission Shifting
- Drop and Hook Procedure for Trailers
- On the road driving in real word conditions.
Training After School
Just because you graduate Roadmaster and get your Class A CDL License that does not mean that your training is over. The employer that you go to work for will put you through additional advanced training and assign you a driver trainer to ride with you on the road until you both feel fully comfortable that you are ready to drive solo. Roadmaster’s job is to help you learn to drive a truck and get your Class A CDL License, but for professional truck drivers the training never ends!
Beware of “Free” Truck Driving Schools
Roadmaster does not offer so-called “free” or “company-sponsored” CDL training. There are schools and carriers that advertise this training at no cost to the student. However, those programs require you to sign a contract allowing them to deduct fees from your paycheck in addition to agreeing to work for them for approximately 1 or 2 years. Read more about The Truth Behind Free CDL Training” here.
Roadmaster does not participate in this type of training because it is set up to benefit the carrier, not the student.
why choose roadmaster drivers school?
A major benefit of Roadmaster is that we offer financial assistance if needed, for those who qualify. If qualified for assistance, you will receive around 80-100% of financial assistance for your tuition dependent on which finance company helps you with a tuition loan. In addition to financing options, we work with numerous trucking companies who offer tuition reimbursement programs and more!
Trucking Company Visits
Roadmaster has frequent on-site visits from trucking companies and their Driver Recruiters. Each of these Recruiters meets with students during their training and provide information about what their company offers when it comes to pay rates and bonuses, opportunities and driving options available to you, the schedules and home time, the benefits and other perks!
Up to 100% Tuition Reimbursement!
If qualified for training, you may receive around 80-100% tuition reimbursement for your tuition dependent on which company you chose to work with after graduation. This means on top of your regular paycheck, a separate check between $100 – $250 per month will be sent to your lender to help with your tuition.
Career Services Available
Job Placement Assistance is available through the Roadmaster’s Career Services. Job Placement assistance is a resource given to graduates for the length of their career at no additional charge as long as Roadmaster is in operation. With the help of our friendly industry experts, trainees learn the process of submitting an application to a carrier. Career Services staff help students through the applications process and see that trainees earning their CDL are given a choice of top-name carriers to apply to.
Get Pre-Hired During Training
Every week during your training recruiters from top trucking carriers will visit the school and present what career packages that they have to offer.
Each carrier is a little different and offers different advantages depending on your needs. That is what makes private “Pick Your Employer” CDL training so attractive!
Top Carriers Looking to Hire You
Roadmaster works with the top truck-driving carriers in the country so that you have only the best employers to work for. Werner, Covenant, Stevens and all the big trucking carriers all hire Roadmaster graduates even while they are still in school!