To start your lucrative career as a truck driver, you need to first complete some of the legal formalities required to work for a trucking company as a truck driver.
The pre-requisite for aspiring truckers as required by the trucking companies are:
1. The truck driver should be at least 21 years of age for interstate driving.
2. The truck driver should be at least 18 years of age for intrastate driving.
3. The truck driver should have passed the DOT physical exam.
4. The truck driver should have cleared the drug test.
5. The truck driver should possess valid driving license from the state of residence.
6. The truck driver should possess the commercial truck driver license, CDL
CDL license is the passport to enter the trucking industry. It will permit you to haul available loads weighing over 26,000 lbs. You can get the CDL license after attending the training and clearing the CDL exam. Some professional companies would even pay for your CDL training.
After the weeks of attending CDL classes, there will be a CDL exam to judge what you have grasped from the training and to see if you are eligible to get the CDL now or not. The CDL test is conducted in two parts. The first part is the written or theory exam which will test the theoretical knowledge on three subjects: combination, airbrakes and general knowledge. You should have learnt the type of vehicles such as hazardous material vehicles, passenger vehicle, combination vehicles and the technical issues related to them.
This first part is pretty straight forward and the questions asked are direct from the manual. So regular study schedule with dedication is all you need for this. Studying your training manual well will not only help you clear the CDL exam but will help you incredibly in your truck driving job too. A quick tip: pay more attention to figures and number related information as they are the most asked questions.
The second part of the test is the practical test. It includes three tests: pre trip safety inspection, skills test and road test. All the knowledge you need to clear the CDL exam will be included in the training program. You will be receiving additional DVD’s which will make you familiar on how to take the test? What to inspect and say about it?
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Tips to take the pre-trip inspection test:
Remember to point out and describe all the safety related issues that you can see on the truck. There are some important key phrases that will make you score high in this test.
1. If you see any bolt, add to it all the bolts are properly tightened and there are no rust or metal shavings on them.
2. For any part you can see attached to the truck, do mention it is securely mounted,
3. If you some across any part which is holding some fluid, then make sure to comment it is not leaking.
4. Check wipers, lights, hazard lights, horn and comment that all are working properly.
If any thing is not clear do not hesitate to ask the examiner about it.
While in skills test the best tip is to drive slow. When you are slow you will have enough time to control the vehicle if anything goes wrong. For road test the best tip is to calm down. Make sure you have followed the basic steps like fastening the seat belt and adjusting the mirrors.
Hope you will find these quick and easy tips handy while appearing for your first CDL test.