Do you dream of traveling across the state of Ohio and around the United States? Do you want to be your own boss? If so, then becoming a truck driver may be the right career for you. Truck drivers are in demand, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
So, what license do you need to drive a semi-truck? In order to drive a semi-truck, you must obtain a Class A CDL.
What is a Class A CDL?
The Class A CDL is the highest level of license for commercial drivers. It allows the truck driver to operate vehicles with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating of 26.001 lbs. or more. With this license, you can drive tractor-trailers, tankers, semi-trucks, and big rigs. Specific endorsements are needed to drive specific vehicles and transport hazardous materials.
How Do You Get a Class A CDL?
To get a Class A CDL, you first must pass a written test to obtain your permit at the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles, complete a truck driving program, and pass a skills test to obtain your license. For someone seeking their Class A CDL, under the new FMCSA Entry-Level Driver Training rule that went in to effect February 2022, you must complete entry-level driver training with a provider registered with FMCSA, like Ohio Business College. The Truck Driving program offered at a vocational school starts with classroom instruction and continues with plenty of real-world experience behind the wheel.
Once the Truck Driving program is completed, graduates take a skills test at a third-party test site to get their official Class A CDL. The skills test consists of a 30-minute pre-trip inspection test, 40-minute basic maneuverability test and a road test, which is not timed. Ohio Business College will supply the appropriate vehicle for you to complete the Class A CDL certification exam.
How Long is a CDL Certificate Program?
The Truck Driving Program at Ohio Business College can be completed in as little as 4 weeks or 8 weeks attending on weekends. Those that complete the program will receive a Certificate of Completion of our Truck Driving Program. Ohio Business College will also help graduates identify jobs available at companies in the community. Our career services staff has close ties with the community and may find out about truck driving jobs, even before the general public.
What Jobs are Available for those with a Class A CDL?
There are many opportunities for those that have graduated from a truck driving program and obtained their Class A CDL. Some of the more common jobs include:
Job #1: Long-Haul Trucker
As a long-haul trucker or over-the-road (OTR) truck driver, you transport freight across long distances. Your semi-truck may be loaded with goods or materials from manufacturers, shipping ports and retail distributors. This job may take drivers away from home for weeks at a time but offers competitive compensation and the ability to see new places. Keep in mind that there are also short-haul trucking jobs if you want to stay within the general vicinity of your home.
Job #2: Construction Equipment Operators
An equipment operator that works in the construction industry, brings materials to the construction site, and removes debris as needed. These materials may include steel beams, concrete, construction vehicles, fuel, and the many other items that a construction site will need to build infrastructure and buildings.
Job #3: Heavy Equipment Hauler
A heavy equipment hauler is responsible for the safe transportation of large machinery and farming equipment from one site to another. They may also operate cranes and winches to load and unload equipment.
Job #4: Bus Driver
Some drivers that hold a Class A CDL, choose to drive buses. They can range from sightseeing buses that transport passengers to those buses used by a charter company. These bus drivers may transport passengers from one local spot or to travel long distances for employers that operate outside metropolitan cities.
Job #5: Delivery Driver
Companies like the U.S. Post Office, FedEx, UPS, and Amazon all need truck drivers to transport packages across Ohio and throughout the United States. With the increase in online shopping and the supply chain disruptions, the industry is in need of more delivery drivers that are certified to drive semi-trucks.
Job #6: Independent Trucking Contractor (Owner-Operator)
An independent contractor in the trucking industry is a self-employed owner-operator and responsible for securing their own trucking jobs. However, they may pick up jobs on their own or work for a larger trucking company. Independent trucking contractors are responsible for finding the best routes, tracking their expenses, and negotiating rates with vendors.
Ready to start a job as a truck driver but still need to obtain your Class A CDL? Ohio Business College’s Truck Driving Academy has you covered. It’s time to get behind the wheel and enjoy the open road.
Want to Learn More?
If you are ready to take to the open road, hauling inventory across the state of Ohio and potentially the rest of the United States, our CDL certificate program at Ohio Business College’s Truck Driving Academy is the perfect place to start. With Ohio locations in Dayton, Middletown and Columbus, our Truck Driving Academy offers one of the most respected Class A CDL certificate programs in the Tri-State region.
If you are interested in a truck driving profession, let Ohio Business College answer any questions you may have. Contact us today to learn more about our Truck Driving program.