While some people find driving to be nothing more than a nuisance, others love the free feeling of being out on the road. For people who enjoy driving, making a career out of it is a very real possibility. While being a truck driver has its advantages, some people do not like the idea of being away from their families or traveling from state-to-state. Instead, being a dump truck driver may be the right career choice for you.
Becoming a dump truck driver is relatively easy, as many companies continually look for responsible and dependable truck drivers. To get started, you will need to obtain your Commercial Driver’s License, or CDL. There are two types of CDLs, Class A and Class B. A Class A CDL enables drivers to operate semi-trailers and larger trucks, while a Class B CDL allows drivers to operate smaller trucks.
The type of CDL you need is dependent on the requirements of your employer. While you will be more desirable to trucking companies with a Class A CDL, the training you need is more costly and requires more work and training. Check with employers to see if they offer partial reimbursement for training classes. Some employers are willing to hire people with no experience, providing they will take the necessary training.
Obtaining a Class A CDL costs around $3,000 to $6,000 and involves 160 hours of training. These hours are broken down into 50 classroom hours and the remaining hours are spent on the road.
For a Class B CDL, training costs less, falling anywhere from $750 to $2,500. Typically, drivers are required to take 22 to 50 hours of training, which are broken down between classroom and driving training.
Topics that are covered in CDL training includes loading, unloading, transporting, and securing. New drivers who have little to no experience will learn other important job skills, such as braking, turning and backing up. By the end of the training course, you should feel confident in your ability to operate a dump truck.
To complete your CDL classes, you will need to take and pass a test. The test is similar to that of a regular driving test, in which you will be required to take a written and driving exam. Check with your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to see which days CDL testing is available.
While taking CDL training courses are an important step to becoming a dump truck driver, many of the skills will be learned on the job. Many dump truck employers find that they have a hard time employing enough drivers, so finding a job should be moderately easy. As you begin your path of being a dump truck driver, know that you will learn plenty more while out on the road.