Many of us have not-so-fond memories of driver’s ed. Precious summer hours spent in a classroom being told how to drive a car, even though we already knew how to operate one. But driver’s ed isn’t simply about learning which pedal makes a car go and which one makes it stop.
It’s about gaining a proper understanding of all the different aspects of a car, as well as the rules of the road. The knowledge and skills learned in driver’s ed can make a life or death difference once you’re behind the wheel.
And truck driving school is no different.
While some states might not require you to complete driving school to earn your CDL, almost all trucking companies will, and for good reason. You receive important, hands-on lessons at trucking school. These are not things you can simply read in a book and expect to know how to do.
You must learn them in person, under the supervision of trained, seasoned professionals.
So what exactly can you expect to learn from truck driving school? Here are a few of the highlights.
Safety is a Top Priority
As dangerous as a car can be, the weight and power behind a tractor-trailer makes them considerably more threatening when handled improperly. The primary focus of truck driving school is learning about the rules, regulations, proper protocols, and what to do in emergency situations.
Safety isn’t something you can simply figure out as you go. You must understand it before you even get behind a wheel.
Watching the Pros
There is a lot to be learned from experienced truck drivers. Before you start driving, you’ll witness a trained professional go step-by-step through the different aspects of the cab and trailer. You will also see how they operate on the road, giving you an authentic experience that instructional videos cannot match.
How to Log Your Time
Keeping an accurate logbook is a very important part of a being a truck driver. In fact, it’s required by law. Your logbook ensures that you aren’t driving for too long at a given time, so that you can get the rest needed to safely operate your vehicle.
It’s important that your logbook is filled out properly.
Before heading out on any route, your rig needs to be properly inspected. At truck driving school, you’ll learn where to look and what to look for.
How to Maneuver and Maintain Control
Semitrucks are much more complex than regular cars, with an array of controls and abilities that allow you to handle whatever the open road might throw your way. When a trailer is attached, they require precise movements to avoid causing damage while turning and backing up.
It’s inevitable as a truck driver that you’ll end up in less than ideal weather conditions. In truck driving school, you’ll learn how to deal with wind, rain, and snow, so you can maintain control and stay safe.
Whether or Not Truck Driving is Right for You
Often, it’s hard to know whether or not you’ll enjoy a job until you actually start to do it. For many, truck driving provides a great work opportunity that allows them to explore the open road while earning a great wage. For others, it’s simply not for them.
Truck driving school doesn’t quite give you the full experience of life as a truck driver, but it gives you a pretty great idea of the responsibility that comes with it. You may reach the end of truck driving school and decide you don’t want to operate a tractor-trailer.
You could still go on and get a CDL B or C and drive a bus, passenger van, delivery truck, or similar vehicles.
For those who decide to attain their CDL Class A and enter the world of truck driving, however, great opportunities await. If you’ve completed school, earned your license, and have at least 2 years of experience, we’d love to have you as part of the Woodruff team.