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How to secure a truck driver job

Transport management is a crucial element in supply chain management. It is an essential link between the production and consumption phases. On-time transportation ensures an uninterrupted business process that meets the targets of the producer and the needs of the targeted consumer.

Efficiency in transportation operations of a firm is determined by a combination of several elements ranging from the required machinery/automobile to skilled drivers.

In most cases, logistics and supply chain management enterprises handle intensive transportation services covering broader geographical scope and capacity.

Such firms advertise for several employment opportunities, including truck driver jobs in various countries where they operate.

A logistics company’s prominent roles are to plan for warehouses and coordinate distribution networks for products.

Among the experts involved in the transportation chain are logistics coordinators, truck drivers, warehouse managers and dispatch professionals.

Sufficient trucks are a necessity for optimum haulage of goods. Like all other forms of machinery, trucks operated by highly skilled and efficient drivers are likely to generate a higher turnaround in terms of revenue for the firm.

Training for Truck Drivers

Trucks are specialized types of vehicles; therefore, they require specialized training besides basic driving skills.

Upon successful completion of the training, one is issued with a commercial learner’s permit (CLP).

With a CLP, one can proceed to apply for a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License).

CDL in the United States is a driver’s license issued to a successful candidate permitting them to operate large, heavy, or placarded hazardous material vehicles for commercial purposes.

To qualify for CDL, you need to pass a general knowledge practice exam. In the case of handling hazardous materials, an additional practice test is required. Special endorsements and restrictions on your CDL apply depending on the application.

CDL License Types

There are three classes of CDL licenses; A, B, and C.

Class A CDL is a requirement for the operation of any combination of vehicles with a gross combination weight rating (GVWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, provided the towed vehicle is heavier than 10,000 pounds.

Class B CDL is a requirement for the operation of a single vehicle with a gross combination weight rating of 26,001 or more pounds or towing a car not heavier than 10,000 pounds.

Class C CDL applies for the operation of a vehicle designed to transport at least 16 occupants, including the driver, or transport materials classified as hazardous under federal law.

Endorsements and Restrictions

CDL endorsements are required to operate particular types of commercial motor vehicles (CMVs).

Some of the endorsements include:

– Hazmat (H) endorsement to operate a vehicle that contains hazardous materials.

– N endorsement to operate a tank vehicle.

– P endorsement to operate a vehicle carrying at least 16 passengers, including the driver.

– T endorsement to tow a double or triple trailer.

– X endorsement is a combination of endorsements to operate tank vehicles and hazardous materials.

– S endorsement to operate a school bus.

CDL restrictions prohibit certain types of CMVs, which is done by placing a restriction code on the CDL. Examples are:

– M restriction shows that a driver can only operate a Class B or C passenger vehicle or school bus.

– N restriction implies that a driver can only operate a Class C passenger vehicle or school bus.

– V restriction is issued when the driver has a medical variance such as being diabetic, having seizures, or vision impairments.

–  O restriction restricts drivers Class A vehicle with a fifth-wheel connection.

– Z restriction is issued when a driver doesn’t take the test with an air over hydraulic brake system.

A clean MRV (Motor Vehicle Driving Record) and PSP (Pre-employment Screening Program) should be top priorities when you own a CDL. Traffic tickets taint your driving history and may hinder finding a better opportunity with higher pay.

You can request your periodic MVR through the available online portals and ensure your records are up to date.

Having a high CSA (Compliance, Safety, and Accountability) score is an added advantage, which would make you stand out in an interview for a truck driver.

With the right qualifications and the required CDL class, coupled with an appealing record and some experience, you can quickly secure a truck driver job with the firm you’ve always dreamed of being part of.

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