Does CDL Training Really Prepare You for the Road?

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CDL Training Prepares Truck Driver?

 

We all have our opinions about CDL training and truck driver training in general. Considering everything, does CDL Training really prepare truck drivers for the open road? While no one disputes the fact that it is good to make drivers pass a test before they control a large and potentially dangerous rig, some have wondered over the years whether or not CDL truck driver training programs adequately prepare truckers for the challenges of hot shot trucking. Of course the training covers maneuvering, driving techniques, and other useful information but does it cover enough? The road is perilous enough for a heavy truck as it is, so why not over prepare drivers instead?

One truck driver fresh out of CDL training from New York says, “It was kind of like getting my driver’s license at 16 all over again. Sure I knew how to drive, but I didn’t know how to handle jerks on the road or how to deal with bad weather at varying altitudes.” Several drivers have similar stories about their first couple of months flatbed truck driving. Many encountered situations that truck driver training never touched on, like angry customers, how to pick a route, how to plan your gas stops, or how to handle getting lost. While these sound like trivial things, they are deal breakers to professional truckers on the clock. “Even the smallest decisions can set you back enough to ruin a whole run. Especially if you are carrying product that is temperature sensitive.” said a seasoned veteran.

Obviously truck driver training and tests can’t cover everything, but can they cover more relevant information? Or maybe it’s the job of employers and trucking companies to make sure their drivers are as prepared as possible? As it is, the valuable lessons are probably being passed along from trucker to trucker. Is this right or should the state along with freight moving companies step in to help their drivers succeed? Either way it doesn’t change the fact that the road is a tough place and not for the faint of heart.

There’s no question that CDL training, truck driver training schools and truck driver training courses need improved and I believe most truck drivers would agree. How can we make CDL training better? What new requirements could help truck driver training more beneficial to truck drivers? We can go a lot of different routes with CDL training and general training. I believe we can offer new truck drivers a lot more in CDL training. We could give new truck drivers an opportunity to ride along with select veteran truck drivers. At the least, we believe changes do need to be made.

All veteran truck drivers know that you learn by driving on the road, carrying loads and putting miles on your truck. There’s a lot of different lesson you have to learn through trial and error. My best advice for new truck drivers is to listen to veteran truck drivers and always be prepared for anything. Follow your safety procedures and you’re going to be just fine. As for CDL training and truck driving schools, we can only hope that changes are made to better prepare truck drivers in the future.