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In truck driving school, learning the rules of the road is an important part of your studies. However, it is important to note that in addition to national laws, each state has its own set of driving laws. As a driver, knowing both the national laws and the laws of the state in which you are traveling is essential in order to avoid tickets and accidents. Here are some of the laws that are likely to vary between states.

Speed Limits

Speed limits are set on the state level. When you cross the border from one state to the next, be aware that there may be a very abrupt increase or decrease in the speed limit, even if you are traveling on an interstate. Often, where there is a decrease in the speed limit, police officers sit near the border to ensure drivers are slowing down. Check the speed limits for the road on which you are traveling regularly to ensure you haven’t missed any changes. Keep in mind that some states also have posted minimum speeds that drivers have to follow.

DUI

Every state has stiff DUI penalties, but the specific laws that they use to enforce them vary. The definition of intoxication—in other words, the BAC levels at which drivers are considered to be intoxicated—are different, as are the legal punishments. For truck drivers, in addition to state DUI penalties, federal DOT punishments for DUI charges are also applied.

Parking

Parking laws can change from state to state and even from town to town. For drivers who are new to an area, parking is one of the most common ticketed violations. As you look for a space to park your truck, never assume that a spot is legal unless there is clear signage.

Phoenix Truck Driving Institute is ready to prepare you for all aspects of building a successful career are a truck driver. For more information about our training programs and truck driver refresher courses in Phoenix, call (877) 295-5372.

The post How Driving Laws Vary from State to State appeared first on Phoenix Truck Driving Institute.

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There’s been a lot of buzz about autonomous vehicles lately. While the safety record of and public reactions to autonomous vehicles have been a mixed bag, the future of self-driving big rigs is actually pretty exciting. That’s because, contrary to popular belief, self-driving trucks are not expected to replace actual truck drivers. The industry will still need truck driving schools to turn out plenty of well-trained drivers with CDLs in hand.

The Possible Benefits of Self-Driving Trucks

Experts in the trucking industry think that autonomous trucks will act more like a backseat driver, rather than completely replacing human drivers. That’s because humans are still needed to do the complex maneuvering through urban areas. It isn’t expected that autonomous trucks will be capable of going completely dock to dock without any intervention from humans. Furthermore, self-driving trucks may actually increase opportunities in the industry for human drivers. That’s because they’re expected to improve efficiency, which consequently reduces freight costs. Lower freight costs support rising demand, which generates more business.

The Current State of Self-Driving Trucks

Self-driving passenger cars have a somewhat patchy safety record so far, and they’re still being tested with considerable limitations. As far as heavy duty commercial vehicles are concerned, the data so far looks promising. A number of companies have been testing self-driving trucks for the transportation industry, including Daimler and Volvo. There have even been some autonomous vehicles already placed into service. An example is the mining industry, which uses autonomous Caterpillar trucks. They’ve demonstrated superior communication abilities, even operating deep beneath the surface. The U.S. Postal Service is hoping to launch an autonomous fleet soon for the purpose of improving efficiency. It would still need human workers in the vehicles to deliver the mail.

Join Phoenix Truck Driving Institute for our next Open House event in Phoenix, AZ! Enjoy some refreshments, try your hand at driving around a big rig, and get the insider’s scoop on the trucking industry. Get in touch at (877) 295-5372 to find out about earning your CDL with our accelerated program.

The post Will Self-Driving Trucks Take Over the Industry? appeared first on Phoenix Truck Driving Institute.

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The Federal Aid Highway Act was signed by President Eisenhower in 1956. Before that time, the transportation industry got by on a mish-mash of state highways and local streets. Needless to say, it was cumbersome. It was also far pricier than it should have been to ship goods from one state to another (and it complicated America’s war effort during the 1940s—something former General Eisenhower was probably frustrated by). Today, graduates of truck driving school have access to a fast and efficient network of interstate highways.

The Early Culture of Trucking

Construction on the new interstates continued into the 1960s. During this time, more people also began moving to the suburbs, which necessitated commuting to work on these newly built interstates. The sight of a passenger vehicle driving alongside a massive big rig became a common one, and a sense of camaraderie developed. Trucking was perceived, rightfully so, as a vital industry that was building and modernizing America. But even as people looked forward to the future, they remembered the past with a bit of nostalgia. The public viewed truckers as the modern version of the old-time cowboys of the Wild West.

The Culture of Convenience

The driving industry shaped the landscape around the interstates as much as the interstates shaped the American driving industry. Long before hours and breaks were heavily regulated by the government, it was recognized that all those truckers hauling goods all day and night would naturally get hungry and need breaks. During the late 1950s and into the 60s, Americans started getting a taste for fast food. McDonald’s was the first, and Burger King followed not long after. Pizza joints also became popular, in large part due to the WWII military servicemembers who had brought back a love of pizza from Italy. Naturally, fast food joints began springing up around the interstates to cater to truckers and commuters. Today, of course, professional truck drivers also have access to healthier options.

Is a career on the open road in your future? Phoenix Truck Driving Institute can help you take your CDL exam in as few as four weeks! Call our Phoenix office at (877) 295-5372—we welcome military families!

The post How Interstates Shaped the American Driving Industry appeared first on Phoenix Truck Driving Institute.

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Some jobs are just jobs, offering nothing more rewarding than a paltry paycheck. If you’re tired of working at the same boring job with a boss looking over your shoulder, it’s time to switch gears and start building a career you can be proud of. As a professional truck driver, you’ll be working to support America’s economy, and you’ll be responsible for connecting countless people to the products they need in their everyday life.

You’ll be able to work your way up.
Without professional truck drivers, America’s economy would grind to a screeching halt. But your pride in your career choice won’t be the only reward. Once you hit the road with your new CDL in hand, you’ll be climbing your way up to the top of the pack. After you’ve gained some experience, you’ll be eligible for an increased rate of pay. Seasoned drivers can also exert more control over the driving assignments they choose.

You and your partner could hit the road together.
Whoever said professional driving isn’t a family-friendly career has clearly never heard of team driving assignments. In fact, commercial transportation offers opportunities seldom found in other industries. You and your partner or spouse could choose to get on the road together. If both you and your partner earn CDLs, then you can share driving responsibilities while enjoying each other’s company.

You’ll see sights most people never get to.
Are you interested in having a career where you could see a polar bear and the Grand Canyon in the same week? Some of the favorite scenic routes of truckers include Alaska’s State Route 11 from Fairbanks to Deadhorse, Arizona’s U.S. Route 160, and Wyoming’s Beartooth Highway. If you decide to join this industry, you’ll have the opportunity to explore more of America than most citizens get to.

Are you ready to begin working toward that first paycheck? Call Phoenix Truck Driving Institute at (877) 295-5372 to ask about our next Open House event! Our CDL school in Phoenix is known for friendly instructors, exceptional classes, and generous job placement assistance.

The post Why Professional Driving Is a Good Long-Term Career Choice appeared first on Phoenix Truck Driving Institute.

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Plenty of folks entering truck driving school are already in the workforce. It isn’t as hard as you’d think to earn your CDL while still working a full-time or part-time job. Remember that CDL training programs don’t last nearly as long as a college degree program. In fact, they aren’t even as long as one semester of college classes. It’s possible to earn your CDL in just four weeks, but you can also space out your training program to accommodate your day job.

Figure out where your time is going.
Have you been putting off enrolling in truck driving school because you never seem to have enough time to get everything done? It’s time to take a closer look at where your time is actually going. For a few days, carry a small notebook with you everywhere you go. Write down every activity you do and how long it takes you. Yes, that includes checking email and social media. After a few days, you can identify the activities that are subtly stealing away your time.

Make a time budget.
Just like a fiscal budget, a time budget can help you stay on track by trimming away unnecessary time expenses, leaving you better able to enroll in a CDL training program to kick off your new career. Unlike fiscal budgets, everyone starts with the same amount of time. From 24 hours, subtract your sleeping time, day job hours, and commuting time. Subtract your other major activities, like self-care time and family obligations. Is there enough time leftover to take a CDL class or two?

Ask for help.
One of the perks of the short-term nature of CDL training is that family and friends are more willing to lend a hand to give you the extra time you need for your classes. Don’t be shy about asking a trusted person to pick up the kids from school now and then, or to handle an errand so you can study your course materials.

When you enroll in Phoenix Truck Driving Institute, you could be ready to start your new career in as few as four weeks! We are a leading CDL school located in Phoenix, with new classes starting every other Monday. Give us a call today at (877) 295-5372 to discuss our available training schedules.

The post Tips for Getting a CDL While You’re Still Working appeared first on Phoenix Truck Driving Institute.

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Fatigue is one of the top enemies of professional truck and bus drivers, and the consequences of not getting enough sleep can be dire. To promote better road safety for all, CDL drivers need to make getting enough quality sleep a top priority. Here are some tips to help you meet your sleep quota.

Reduce Distractions
When it’s time to get some shut-eye, you should park in a safe location, preferably away from major sources of noise. Use ear plugs if you feel comfortable sleeping in them, or consider making space for a white noise machine. A small desk fan can serve as a white noise machine. Remember to silence your cellphone. Block out all light sources too. Either use an eye mask or place a blackout curtain across your sleeper berth. Use an alarm clock that doesn’t have illuminated numbers.

Get Comfortable
You’ll spend a lot of time in your sleeping berth, so make it as comfortable as possible. Replace the mattress if it’s uncomfortable, or add a high-quality mattress topper. Invest in a pillow that offers good support and cushioning. Keep the cab temperature comfortably cool.

Prepare for Quality Sleep
The routine you use before bedtime can be just as important as your sleeping environment. At least an hour or two before bed, avoid anything with a screen. The light from electronics can disrupt your body’s natural circadian rhythm, which interferes with quality sleep. Caffeine can affect your body for five-plus hours after drinking it, so try to avoid coffee later in the day. Avoid stimulants like nicotine, and opt for a light dinner instead of a heavy or spicy meal.

Phoenix Truck Driving Institute offers nationally recognized CDL courses, refresher courses, and road testing. We wholeheartedly welcome military service members, veterans, and their spouses who are interested in building a rewarding career as a professional driver. Call our campus in Phoenix at (877) 295-5372.

The post Tips for Getting Consistent Sleep on the Road appeared first on Phoenix Truck Driving Institute.

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Is an office job not quite right for you? For those with wanderlust and an inquisitive personality, a career in the trucking industry can offer surprising benefits. Drivers with CDLs—commercial driving licenses—are in high demand. This means you can look forward to job security and good starting wages, in addition to the following perks.

You can start your new career quickly.
Earning a college degree can take years, and even after you’ve earned a diploma, there’s little guarantee that you’ll find a job in your field. Truckers also need to go to school, but truck driving school takes a matter of weeks, rather than years. This means you can land a job in your new career quickly, and you won’t have to worry about paying off thousands in student loans in the years to come.

Trucking can be a family-friendly life.
One of the reasons why some people won’t consider a career in the trucking industry is because they worry they’ll spend too much time away from their families. But actually, trucking is more flexible than you’d think. You could take only local jobs, for example, in which case you can be home every night. Or, consider team trucking. There are plenty of spouses and unmarried couples who hit the road together. If you have a partner equally as adventurous as you, getting on the road together can be the perfect lifestyle choice.

Newer cabs are surprisingly comfortable.
Few outside the trucking industry have ever seen the inside of a cab. That’s why most aspiring CDL drivers are pleasantly surprised to see how comfortable the living quarters are. There won’t be as much space as an apartment, of course, but you’ll have a comfortable sleeping berth, mini kitchen, and mini bathroom. These days, some truckers treat themselves to custom-made cabs with all the comforts of home—including flat screen TVs and hardwood floors.

Reap the rewards of a life on the road! Enroll in Phoenix Truck Driving Institute, and you could earn your CDL in as few as four weeks! Get in touch at (877) 295-5372, and ask us about upcoming open house events at our truck driving school in Phoenix.

The post Surprising Benefits of a Trucking Career appeared first on Phoenix Truck Driving Institute.

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Since truckers spend so much time on the road, you might wonder what they do when they’re not driving. Some truck drivers, especially those who drive more locally, like to enjoy a normal life at home with their families when they’re not on the job. Other drivers that don’t have the same kinds of commitments might rent a cheap apartment so they have a home base. When they’re on the road, drivers practically live at truck stops. Read on and take a closer look.

With Their Families
Despite what you might have heard, it’s not at all impossible to live a life with your family while also driving commercially. Many drivers orient their schedules so they have as much time as possible with their families. This tends to be easier for drivers who take shorter routes, but it’s possible for drivers who specialize in long distance runs as well.

In Small Apartments
Some drivers don’t have many commitments back home and just want to be on the road as much as possible. These people tend to stay in smaller apartments or even hotels when they’re not on shift, because their main concern is getting back on the job and on the road.

At Truck Stops
If you ask a trucker where he or she lives while out driving, the answer might be a simple “on the road”. Truckers who spend most of their time driving will take reprieve at truck stops. Many of today’s truck stops are fully stocked with all kinds of amenities, from gas stations and fast food places to shower stalls and movie theaters. When you live on the road, you typically sleep at truck stops.

Are you interested in enrolling in a truck driving school in Phoenix so you can get started in the trucking industry? Call Phoenix Truck Driving Institute at (877) 295-5372 or browse through our website to get to know us.

The post Where Do Truck Drivers Live? appeared first on Phoenix Truck Driving Institute.

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The spring is a beautiful time of year to be a commercial truck driver, as you’ll get to see the seasons change before your eyes. There are certain places that are best to check out during the spring in Michigan, Texas, and California, so take the chance if you get it. Here’s a look at some spring sights to see across the country.

Brockway Mountain
If your next trucking trip finds you in Michigan, you’ll want to check out Brockway Mountain. You can follow a mountain road in the northern Upper Peninsula and check out a beautiful panoramic view of Lake Superior, and on clearer days, you can see Isle Royale National Park. The spring is the best time to visit this area because the road is shut down in the winter. Here you’ll find all kinds of wildflowers, and some of them are only found here. If you show up at night, you’ll be met with an amazing view of the stars in the sky.

Texas Hill Country
There’s much more to the South than desert, and Texas Hill Country proves that without a doubt. Texas Hill Country sports yellow, blue, white, and purple shades all through the hills during the springtime. While you’re in the area you may take a Wine & Wildflower winery tour or stop in for a bite to eat at Cooper’s BBQ.

Coachella Valley
The Coachella Music Festival has a lot to offer, but the Coachella Valley itself has even more. The springtime is a great time to visit because the flowers are blooming, and the weather hasn’t become excruciatingly hot.

When you get your start at a truck driving school in Phoenix, you can see all these sights as a commercial driver. Contact the Phoenix Truck Driving Institute or learn about our CDL school on our website. You can reach us by calling (877) 295-5372 today.

The post Spring Sights to See Across the Country appeared first on Phoenix Truck Driving Institute.

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There’s nothing like being a commercial truck driver, but you have to know how to break into the industry if you want to land yourself a job. It helps to start out at a CDL school, so you can prepare yourself to earn your commercial driver’s license, and then you’ll have a network of industry professionals that you can utilize. Here’s a brief overview of how you can get hired in the trucking industry.

Start with a CDL School
Boost your chances of earning your CDL and making it in the trucking industry by starting off at a CDL school. A truck driving school will get you started on the right foot, so you can get your first commercial driving job with poise and confidence.

Get Your License
Once you’ve been through CDL school, you should have everything you need in your repertoire to earn your commercial driver’s license. Bear in mind that you need to be at least 18 to earn your CDL and 21 if you’re driving across state lines, and you must have one year or more of standard driving experience as well as an active civilian driver’s license. Then you can take the tests and pass using your knowledge and experience from CDL school, and you’ll be on your way to your first commercial trucking job.

Use Your Network
In addition to teaching you everything you need to know to pass your CDL exams, truck driving school will introduce you to people who can help you out as you progress through your career. Take advantage of the connections you make during CDL school and talk to them whenever you need expert advice from people who have done it all before.

If you’re interested in getting a job in the trucking industry, you should call Phoenix Truck Driving Institute at (877) 295-5372. You can also check out our website to see what our Truck driving school in Phoenix is all about.

The post How Do You Get Hired in the Trucking Industry? appeared first on Phoenix Truck Driving Institute.

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