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Showing posts with label CDL training. Show all posts
Showing posts with label CDL training. Show all posts

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Dash Cameras: Are They Helpful or Harmful?

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truck dash cam with view of blue sky
Over the last few years dashboard cameras (dash cams) have become the must-have accessory for road voyagers. Next, to artificial intelligence, this new device has some hefty pros and cons. If you’re considering getting a dash cam for your next long-haul we have made a list of things for you to think about. Before you press record or invest in a dashcam we want you to make sure it’s the right thing for your truck.


Pros

There are some obvious pros to dash cams that are changing the game for truckers and one of those would be that it prevents staged accidents. Often times passenger vehicles blame large trucks for accidents that just never happened. It’s easy to play the blame game when there are no witnesses or proof. Statistics say that of the car-truck crashes approximately 80 percent of them were at the fault of passenger vehicles. This number may be increased as more dash cams are installed. Dash cams can save you from a rise in insurance and keep you from being blamed for a staged accident.

Other Pros of Dashcams Include the Following:

Improve Driving Skills

CDL instructors and company freight trainers are beginning to use dashcams to train new drivers and help prevent common mistakes. Dash cams are becoming a new method of learning and are creating a culture of safety on the road. Some dash cams can even store information technology that may assist in the training process. CDL training is slowly improving with the help of gadgets like dash cameras. 

Document Your Trip

Being away from family on long-hauls can be extremely tough, but once you come home watching the footage from the dashcam will give you a chance to bond with loved ones.

Prevents Theft

Cargo theft can cost you thousands, but with the use of a dash cam, you can capture the culprits and possibly retrieve the stolen cargo. 


Cons

The cons of dash cams are a little lighter than the pros, but there are a few things that should be considered.

Gold Honda Accord crashes into a red dump truck from behindDriving Distraction

Dash cams can easily be a distraction. Technology has a mind of its own and while you’re driving something may happen and you feel the urge to fiddle. The combination of fiddling with one hand and using the other to operate a 55,000-pound truck may not end the best way.

Rule Breaking

There are some states where recording without consent is illegal. You may be arrested, charged, or even fined, so making sure you are aware of the laws of each state line you cross will save you from facing some heavy consequences. 


The technology that is dash cameras can come in handy and can also lead to tragedy. Knowing the ends and outs of the specific camera you purchase is the most beneficial way to ensure it is right for you and the long-hauls you’ll be making. Hopefully, these basic pros and cons will give you an idea of what to expect from all trucker's new favorite gadget and help you in finding the best dash cam for your truck.
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Thursday, May 16, 2019

Truck Accidents That Will Make You Wonder Who Gave Them Their CDL

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ExpressTruckTax talks about weird and funny truck accidents Choosing the right institution to get your CDL training is important to ensure you get the best training possible. CDL classes can take anywhere from 2 weeks to 2 months depending on the level of training a trucker is interested in getting. Obtaining your CDL license is a combination of in-class course work and on the road experience. A book won't help you learn everything and just hopping in a 55,000 lbs truck and just going won't either. 

Proper CDL training at a truck driving school is not the only ingredient to becoming a pro driver. It takes a bit of common sense to be a trucker. We understand that things happen, but there are some truck accidents that have us asking, "how?". Here are a few trucking accidents that have us asking, "what the truck, who in the world gave these drivers their CDL and how in the world did they get themselves in this predicament?".


TMT red and white truck with "sure we can" on the side stuck under overpass









You might have seen this before, but we can’t get over how this driver thought he could fit under this overpass. They may want to put a sign on all bridges that say “bridge ahead may be shorter than it appears.''

Red dump truck caught on pole








We think this driver wanted to take a swing on the pole rather than make a right turn.

Bus in China going up the steps on the street







If this is a foreshadow of what our streets will look like in 2080, we are in! It’s like an escalator on steroids.  

Class A CDL training truck crossing median











If this is an example of "class A" training, how big of a curve do you think the instructor used, for this to happen?

Cement truck crushes building

This accident is definitely giving us Hercules vibes.

Truck takes wrong exit










We’re pretty sure this guy missed his exit.

Orange Schneider truck loses wheels on the freeway












Do you think they noticed?

Truck driver taking a selfie on the side of the road












But first, a selfie.

Swift semi-truck accident Swift Truck at a way station








Just a little more to your left.

Truck stuck at the top of a road in the Noe Valley neighborhood of San Francisco









Speed bump ahead, they said.

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Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Benefits Of Tag Teaming On The Road

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TeamBefore diving into team truck driving you should first have an understanding of what you’re signing up for. We’ve made that decision a little easier for you by giving you the scoop on what teaming up on the road looks like. 

Having a partner means longer hours and fewer stops, aside from the time regulations issued by the FMCSA. There is a quicker turnaround time with team drivers, making them high in demand. The demand for team driver is so high, there are some companies who will fully pay for CDL training (Link to How to find the perfect fit to all your CDL Training Needs) if a driver agrees to be a part of a team.

Significant Higher Pay

There are a lot of incentives that come with team driving associated with pay. Majority of the time team drivers make more per mile. There are a few companies who offer a 5,000 mile-per-week guarantee. No matter if you actually drive that many hours per week you’ll always get paid for driving 5,000 miles. If you happen to exceed those 5,000 miles your pay-per-mile may increase. Keep in mind that the 5,0000 miles will be split between you and your partner.

Example: If a company is offering a 6 figure salary for team truck drivers it means that the bottom line pay per mile is at least .39 per mile, for each driver. This could mean $1,200 more a month per driver compared to drivers who make .28 per mile. (*based on 5,000 miles driven per week)

Stress Less

Cut down on the amount of time it takes to do your pre-trip inspection with a companion to divide the timely duty with. With team driving, comes safety. There is always a slight fear that something may get stolen or worse that you may become a victim of some sort. This may be a stretch, but hey, things happen. With a partner on the road, you also have some extra security and backup, just-in-case.

Quality Time

Team Driving
Choosing the right driving partner is the main piece of having a positive team driving career. Choosing a companion you can trust takes time, but you could go a quicker route and choose someone you already have a bond with. Whether it’s your best friend, your child, or your spouse this could be how you choose to spend your quality time. There are plenty of truckers who miss their
family and friends when traveling for long periods of time, but it doesn’t have to be the case. Choosing a teammate who you already trust makes going to sleep in the sleeper berth while cruising down a steep hill, a little easier.

It is okay to not find team driving attractive, some people enjoy the peace and quiet trucking can bring. If you are interested in trying team driving be sure to go through the partner selection process thoroughly. This will make the biggest difference in whether or not you are a team driving advocate.





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Tuesday, April 23, 2019

How To Find The Perfect Fit To All Your CDL Training Needs

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join usYou’ve made the decision to be a trucker, now you’re saying ‘what’s next?’ The next step after you’ve decided to venture into this career is choosing where to get your CDL. Just like any major, life -changing decisions there are many factors that go into choosing what CDL school works best for you. Things to consider would be financial responsibility, duration, and community. We are breaking down differences, similarities and important factors to help you make the right first step for your new career.

Financial Responsibility

Paid

Paid CDL training is also known as company-sponsored training. This is when a company pays the upfront cost of your training. Normally companies will cover both your transportation to the training facility and hotel accommodations while in training. In some cases there are companies who pay for the cost of meals and even loan you money to pay your bills while you are taking their course. 

In return for the paid training the company sponsoring you will require you to drive for them for an agreed upon period of time, or until your tuition is paid off. Not every paid CDL training is identical, so it is important to do extensive research.

Private

Private CDL trainings are with independently owned truck driving schools. Typically there is a requirement to pay tuition upfront. This structure is ideal for those with families who wish to be closer, as they will commute back and forth. Being that this more of a risk than company-sponsored training prospective students will want to get as many pre-hire letters as possible and insure that the companies they’re interested in hire from the chosen institution.

Tip: If choosing either option you are looking at “paying back” or paying upfront $4,000 to $10,000. We suggest you go with the best value, not just the lowest price.

driver trainingDuration

The factors in regards of time you’ll have to dedicate to your CDL isn’t a matter of paid versus private. The duration is contingent on your choice in license class, desired endorsements, whether you’re a full-time or part-time student, and class and driving hours. 

The requirements for each state is also different, so without knowledge of some pretty important factors, we’ll take the word of most CDL instructors who say anywhere from 3 to 8 weeks.

Community

Obtaining your CDL in the best environment for your learning habits is vital to how well you succeed. Knowing the student to instructor ratio is important. If you are the kind of person who thrives from 1 on 1 interaction choosing a school with a 40 to 1 ratio isn’t going to cut it. This is your career, so your success in the field based on your success in the classroom. For students going the company-sponsored route, the community makes all the difference. How a company trains its prospective employees is a reflection on how they treat their actual employees, so be super aware of this.



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Monday, November 14, 2016

5 Ways to Survive Truck Driving School

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Every year, tons of hopeful truckers enroll in schools and programs to get their CDL's. As with any training program, the work is tough, and you get out of it what you put in. But how can you make sure you survive the whole process? Let’s run through this!

Start Early


So once you’ve been accepted and enrolled into a program, you need to hit the ground running. Find out what books and training materials you need as soon as possible, and start reviewing.

Review everything. It’ll be tough, but you will understand more of what you’re learning later. Learn the definitions of words, or at least familiarize yourself with them.

Also, look into some online communities and learn what you can from there. Whether that’s lingo, or survival tips, you can find plenty in forums, social media, and blogs!

Study Hard


Oh, nobody wants to hear it. You need to study hard. Yeah, you’re going to spend a lot of time learning all this in your classes, but you’re gonna have to put in a ton of time and study hard.

Think about it, not everybody passes their CDL right away. You want to become a trucker, so you’re going to need to get through your training and learn as much as possible.

You don’t want to be a rookie trucker forever, do you? Or worse, a CDL dropout?

Start Sleeping Well


This is a tough one. You might not know this, but sleep is crucial for success, health, and happiness. While you might imagine a gruff, short-tempered trucker as the standard cut of the cloth, that isn’t actually the case.

But plenty of truckers out there have sleep problems from the lifestyle. Of course, this leads to risks. Without sleep, you can find yourself with a grumpy disposition, impaired immunity system, and unable to concentrate.

That’s why you need at least eight hours of sleep, which is even more important once you’re a truck driver. So start doing everything you can to improve your sleep schedule!

Start Being Healthy


When you’re learning the ins and outs of your CDL, you should also spend some of your time off implementing healthy habits that will stick with you in the cab.

Start with your fitness by creating a good workout routine that will stick with you. Learn how to use your environment and your own body, or find mobile fitness tools and routines you can take with you.

We’ve given you fitness advice before, but we’re also big proponents of healthy eating. Ask any trucker about food on the road, and you’ll find out that truck stops are full of convenience foods — not health food.

Now, we’re not saying you need to eat kale chips every day (they’re good, I swear!), but you should do what you can to eat plenty of fresh veggies, whole grains, and lean proteins. Your diet will affect your disposition as much as sleep and fitness, so start eating right!

Of course, there are other problem areas for truckers — like perpetual back injuries from sitting all day, for example. You will need to watch your health as a trucker, bottom line.

Plan Ahead


Our first bit of advice is to start setting personal goals beyond getting your CDL. All things considered, you will put in the hard work and it’ll pay off with a CDL, and hopefully a trucking job!

But then you will have to decide what kind of job you want to have, where you want to be based out of, and all sorts of other considerations.

While you’re still in school, figure out what you like about driving a truck, learn about company drivers as compared to owner operators, and connect with other students.

No matter what you do, getting your CDL is hard work. With all the hard work you put in, you’ll be a truck driver before you know it. Once you’re a trucker, we’ll be ready to help you e-file Form 2290 right here at ExpressTruckTax!


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