Why Demand Is High for Commercial Truck Drivers

As the job market continues to improve, the trucking industry continues to add new jobs each month. Commercial truck driving offers you the opportunity to see the country and enjoy time to yourself while playing an integral role in the American economy. If you would like to consider a job in the commercial trucking industry, stop by one of HDS Truck Driving Institute’s Tucson open houses to learn more.

Integral to Economic Recovery

The trucking industry has always been integral in the movement of consumer goods. Trucks carry anything from raw materials and ready-to-buy products to food, livestock, and chemicals. Although the trucking industry, like many others, saw a reduction during the early years of the recent recession, today it is leading the national recovery. As the U.S. economy continues to improve, the need for both raw materials and consumer goods has increased. Thus, the trucking industry has needed to expand as well, opening up new jobs every month. Because the demand for new truck drivers is so high, there is currently a shortage of drivers. CDL schools report that many graduates have six to 10 job offers before they have even passed the CDL test.

Fast On-the-Job Training and Advancement

Commercial truck drivers are also desirable because on-the-job training is fast and effective. Once you are employed, you will immediately begin building upon the training you received in CDL school. In as little as one year on the job, you can have gained enough experience to significantly advance your career and command a higher salary. After just three years of driving, many truckers enjoy salaries in the range of $50,000. Additionally, if you want to pursue specialties such as the transport of hazardous materials, this training is provided by your employer while you work.

HDS Truck Driving Institute will prepare you for a successful career as a CDL trucker. We invite you to explore our website to learn more about admissions, training, and job placement in Tucson. You can also reach us by phone at (877) 205-2141for the answers to your CDL training questions.

Tips for Marrying a Professional Truck Driver

Most professional truck drivers spend multiple days out of the week driving goods to and from various destinations. This can mean significant time spent away from home, which can be a challenge for married couples to overcome. Keeping a positive attitude and communicating with your spouse can help you maintain a healthy and happy married relationship with a truck driver.

Enjoy Your Independence

Spouses of truck drivers have the opportunity to enjoy their independence in a way many other spouses do not. Because a trucker may be gone five or six days out of the week, you have the opportunity to live and enjoy an independent lifestyle. Find hobbies and activities you love that don’t require your spouse. Focus on your own lifestyle and finding things that make you happy when your spouse is not available to help. You can also take time to focus on your non-marital relationships, such as spending time with other family and friends.

Plan Your Time Together

Because time spent together with a spouse who is a trucker is often limited, planning out that time can give you the opportunity to make the most of it. Making plans can also help to bolster your mood if you are feeling lonely while your spouse is away. Keep in mind that plans for time spent together don’t need to be large—think about watching a movie you both enjoy, having dinner at a nice restaurant, or simply talking a walk or a bike ride together when the weather is nice. If you’re able, talk to your spouse while they are on the road to develop plans together that you can both look forward to upon their return.

Truck driving can be a rewarding career that allows you and your spouse time to enjoy an independent lifestyle. If you would like to learn more about becoming a truck driver in Tucson, contact HDS Truck Driving Institute today by calling (877) 205-2141. You can find additional tips for managing your work and home life as a trucker on our blog.

Obtaining a Commercial Driver’s License

A Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) is required for those who wish to legally operate a Commercial Motor Vehicle. To obtain your CDL, you must pass both a written exam and demonstrate your ability to safely and correctly handle a tuck. Attending a Tucson CDL school can prepare you for both portions of this exam to ensure you have no trouble passing and pursuing a career as a truck driver.

Receive a DOT Physical

Before you can operate a truck for training or employment, you must first receive a Department of Transportation physical. This physical is designed to ensure that you are physically able to drive a truck safely without putting yourself or others at risk. Your physical may include a vision test, hearing test, blood pressure reading, and assessment of any other physical conditions that may interfere with truck driving.

Obtain Your CLP

A Commercial Learners Permit (CLP) allows you to operate a truck in the presence of a licensed individual for training purposes. To receive your CLP, your driving record over the past 10 years will be checked in all 50 states. You may also need proof of state residency. Additionally, you will need to pay a fee before receiving your CLP.

Enroll in CDL School

The CDL exam includes four parts in total: a written portion and three skills tests. Skills that will be tested include vehicle inspection, basic control, and a road test. A CDL school can provide you with the training and knowledge needed to pass all portions of the CDL exam.

Take the CDL Test

Once you have had your CLP for 14 days, you can elect to take the CDL test for a fee. Upon successful completion of the test, your documentation will be processed; you may either receive your CDL in person or it may be mailed to you.

HDS Truck Driving Institute is here to help you prepare for the Arizona CDL test. Visit our website to learn more about our fully-accredited CDL school in Tucson. You can reach us by calling (877) 205-2141 or clicking on our web contact form.

Healthy Snacks for On-the-Go

Finding healthy meal and snack options can be a challenge while on the road as a commercial truck driver. Bringing your own healthy snacks or making healthy store-bought choices can prevent overeating, maintain your weight, and keep you feeling healthy and alert behind the wheel. Check out these healthy snack suggestions to find your next go-to snack while on the road:

Fresh Fruit and Milk

Fruit and milk are a classic combination that fulfills many of your body’s needs. An apple, banana, peach, pear, or plum from a convenience store offers a natural energy boost and a crisp, fresh flavor. Pair your fruit with a carton of skim milk to add calcium, protein, and vitamin D to your healthy on-the-go snack.

Wheat Crackers and String Cheese

Another great snacking combination truckers can easily obtain is wheat crackers and string cheese. If possible, choose a single-serving package of wheat crackers from a convenience store to prevent overeating.  You’ll gain all the benefits of a low-fat dairy snack, as well as the health advantages of choosing a whole-wheat product.

Chocolate-Covered Pretzels

Chocolate-covered pretzels can help to curb a sweet craving while providing a snack that isn’t overly heavy on calories or fat. If you’re in the mood for a treat, this option can be the perfect easy-to-find solution without resorting to a less healthy alternative.

Fruit and Yogurt Parfait

Today, many fast food restaurants have expanded their menu to include healthy options. Fruit and yogurt parfaits are a staple of many healthy menus and a great healthy snack truckers can enjoy while on the road. A parfait offers a sweet treat while providing your body with healthy energy and protein to get you to your destination.

Choosing a trucking career doesn’t mean giving up the healthy lifestyle you love. At HDS Truck Driving Institute, our experienced instructors will provide you with the firsthand knowledge you need to pass your CDL exam and enjoy a successful career as a truck driver. We invite you to check us out online or give us a call at (877) 205-2141 for more information today.

A Look at Semi Truck Drivers’ Salary

Semi truck drivers operate vehicles over 26,000 lbs in weight. Most semi truck drivers are long-haul drivers working for spans of many days at one time before spending one to two days off at home. Semi truck drivers play an integral role in the U.S. trucking industry, providing transportation of both raw materials and consumer goods.

Semi Truck Driving Wages

In 2013, there were more than one million semi truck drivers employed in the United States. The mean hourly wage for semi truck drivers was $19.68, resulting in a mean yearly salary of $40,940. However, both hourly wage and annual salary are dependent upon a number of factors, including experience, miles driven, and home state. Hourly wages for a semi truck driver range from $12.18 to $28.66 throughout the U.S., while annual salaries can range from $25,330 to $59,620.

Semi Truck Driving Employment Information

As of 2013, the states with the highest number of employed semi truck drivers were Texas, California, Pennsylvania, Florida, and Illinois. Annual wages in these states ranged from $36,400 in Florida to $45,040 in Illinois. However, the top paying states for semi truck drivers were Alaska, North Dakota, Massachusetts, Wyoming, and the District of Columbia. Of these states, Alaska’s annual wage was highest at $53,440. In 2011, most semi truck drivers are employed with general freight trucking companies, with salaries averaging $41,250 per year. The highest-paying semi trucking jobs are currently express delivery positions, which provided average salaries of $56,830 per year in 2011. The second most highly-paid semi truck drivers in 2011 were those who worked for aerospace corporations; the annual salary for these drivers in 2011 was $56,350.The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the current trend of growth in the trucking industry will continue to grow through the year 2022.

Are you looking for a job in a desirable, fast-growing industry? Contact HDS Truck Driving Institute today by calling (877) 205-2141 to learn more about CDL training in Tucson. Please visit our website for additional information about financial aid, military education benefits, and our Lifetime Job Placement Assistance.

A Guide to Vehicle Inspections as a Commercial Driver

As a truck driver, there are many safety protocols you must follow. These safety protocols are designed to keep both you and others safe while on the road. The need to learn proper vehicle inspection protocol doesn’t end with passing your CDL exam. Regular vehicle inspections before you get behind the wheel ensure that your truck is safe and will respond to your commands properly under any conditions.

The Pre-Trip Inspection

Before leaving on any job, perform a thorough visual inspection of your truck. Check all areas of the cab and trailer. Look for signs where wear or damage that could pose a safety hazard while driving. You should also read the previous vehicle inspection report to ensure that any prior issues have been corrected before you leave. Never drive a truck that you feel is unsafe—have any issues repaired before your trip begins.

The En-Route Inspection

You should continue to verify the safety of your truck while on the road. An en-route inspection involves being aware of how your truck is handling and responding. Your en-route inspection should include taking note of how your truck’s lights, brakes, tires and steering respond, as well as monitoring any connections with your trailer. If you notice any problems, stop the truck and contact your superiors before continuing.

Post-Trip Inspection

After each day of driving and once your entire trip is complete, you should perform a complete visual inspection of your truck. This inspection should be identical to your pre-trip inspection—look for damage or wear that should be addressed to prevent posing a safety concern. If you cannot make repairs on your own while on the road, request assistance from your employer.

Performing regular vehicle safety inspections is an important part of your CDL exam and your safety while on the road as a trucker. You can find out more about passing the CDL exam and enjoying a safe and successful trucking career when you visit HDS Truck Driving Institute on the web or call (877) 205-2141.