Boot camp for new drivers

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When our President sends new recruits to war he can assume that their basic level of training meets consistent high standards. While there may be a wide range of abilities in each individual, completing boot camp means they are at least starting on a level playing field. Boot camp for truckers is more of a crapshoot, which is why the Professional Truck Driver Institute’s efforts to continue to develop uniform industry standards and to certify courses that meet those standards is important to the industry.

Those standards for entry level truck driver training help set curriculum guidelines and training procedures for entry level truck driving courses, carrier driver finishing programs and younger driver programs across the country. All PTDI standards were developed with input from carriers, schools, insurance companies, safety engineers, risk managers, and government and other experts.

PTDI continues its quest to provide fleet owners with highly trained new truck drivers.

US Xpress public relations manager Greg Thompson is all for the voluntary certification and US Xpress’ in-house school is PTDI certified. “We found that PTDI certification training is very beneficial and provides new recruits with a strong basic knowledge both in the classroom and on the test path,” Thompson says. Truckers also seek out PTDI certified schools as word spreads about the solid training programs. “One of our best truckers – now an independent contractor – came to us for our school and our contractor program. We got a great driver, and he accomplished his goals.”

Industry leaders support training standards, and PTDI will be the beneficiary of CCJ’s inaugural Big Rig Ride this March in Orlando. Attendees at the Truckload Carriers Association’s annual meeting are invited to spend an afternoon riding Harleys and helping PTDI through donations. “I can’t think of a better way to support voluntary truck driver training standards than to ride in the Big Rig Ride during TCA’s annual convention,” says Clifton Parker, TCA’s chairman. Parker will be joining other fleet owners on the motorcycle ride through central Florida.

It’s not too late to join the fun and help support an organization that’s done a lot to raise the standards for driver training. (See page 14 for more information)

Readiness is all about training, and high standards for that training help get truckers ready to roll.