Acquiring a Commercial Driver’s License is not a walk in the park like most candidates ought to think. The reality is that not everyone who enrolls in CDL School gets a pass from the regulators. Of course, there are drivers who are denied CDL certificate due to health issues but the major reason is simply failing the CDL exam. Quite often, mistakes translate to valuable lessons to be learnt but in CDL school, it will determine whether you get the green light or the red light. In that regards, there are certain mistakes you should avoid making in CDL School if you really want to become a certified commercial driver.
- Application discrepancy- Giving false information on your CDL application form is the most common reason why candidates are shown the exit door before they even finish training. In fact, it is considered a case of fraud if you deliberately hide your criminal background, medical record, driving record misdemeanor and work history. However, CDL Schools are more likely to find a solution if you are transparent about your past record rather than hiding it and waiting for them to dig it up.
- Lack of Preparation- The 2nd most common mistake potential commercial drivers make is under-estimating the competence of CDL school. Just because you have been driving a car for more than 30 years without a ticket or an accident, does not guarantee you will get an automatic pass for CDL certification. In fact, there are first-timer drivers who have operated a car for not more than a year who pass CDL exams yet the experienced ones with college degrees are left out. The best way to prepare is to research and know what is expected of you. Download the CDL manual from your state DOT website and read it. Undertaking an online CDL practice test will also enable you to study and evaluate yourself on your specific license.
- Having a bad attitude- There is only one way you will pass CDL school and that is by studying in due time and following the trainer’s instructions. CDL curriculum covers a lot of areas in a short span and if you lag behind not doing your homework, you might end up flopping the DMV permit exam. That is why prospects are advised to utilize online CDL practice test but the effort of getting that pass starts individually. Don’t hesitate to ask your instructor questions if there are areas you do not understand. Cramming for your permit exam the night before will only put you in exam panic mode and deprive your sleep. Probably the biggest mistake students make is assuming that they know it all. Regardless of whether you are veteran or an amateur, you will learn something new every day about truck driving if you are open-minded.
- Giving up- Sometimes the practical test is too overwhelming and you can’t seem to get it right. No matter how many times you try backing up, you can’t keep the trailer at a straight angle like the rest of the candidates. Even the instructor knows all students don’t learn at the same pace and with enough persistence, you will eventually perform to par. Just don’t let the difficulty of maneuvering the truck get into your head that you can’t do it. Even the best truck drivers were the worst truck drivers before they knew how to handle the wheel.
- Going into panic mode- You probably drove a truck smoothly during practice test but made a single mistake and got a fail yet your classmate who made countless mistakes got a pass. The question lingers, why? Was he/she favored by the examiner? A little secret that most CDL students do not know is that instructors award points based on how calm you are when you make mistakes while test-driving. The logic behind it is that in your truck driving career, it is a guarantee that you will make a few errors but how you react to it is what matters. In fact, most major truck accidents could have been avoided if the drivers did not switch into a panic state. Just like pilots, truck drivers are trained to keep a calm composure during emergencies. So the next time you miscalculate a roundabout and turn the wheel too long or too short, just keep a calm composure and react like it is a simple glitch that won’t happen again.
- Neglecting your health- Sometimes you follow all the recommended advice by the pundits and veterans but you still get a fail. The problem could be you did everything right except neglect your health. For instance, depriving yourself enough sleep to put in extra-time to study could do more harm than good. Sleep deprivation is known to decrease alertness and impairs the memory. Additionally, you can increase your concentration by drinking a lot of water, exercising regularly and eating whole foods while avoiding too much sugar.