Entry Level Driver Training

Entry Level Driver Training

If you haven’t heard yet. Startartign next February, to be exact February 7th 2022. Anyone who wants to upgrade their CDL or get their initial CDL will have to go through Entry Level Driver Training.

While I completely understand the premises behind this rule, I completely disagree with it.

Especially for rural America.

Growing up on a farm around trucks and equipment I know just how important it is to be familiar with what you are operating before you start really using it.

But do you really think that CDL schools teach new drivers the in’s out’s of the truck like your own personal team can?

The answer is no.

CDL schools have one priority. Get the student through the CDL exam!

The truth is that most CDL training facilities have 4 students in the safe truck all day long and each student only gets about 2 hours of driving a day.  And that time is split into intervals. 

That means that after a 5-week program the student gets a maximum of 40 hours of drive time. 

One week in the real world.

Then to top it off they have never pulled any kind of load throughout the whole program.

The whole reason that I bring this up is that this new rule isn’t going to make better drivers.  All it is really going to do is to make it HARDER to get new drivers.

Let’s run through the costs really quickly.

Keep in mind that I am going to be using round numbers, (partly because I’m pretty simple-minded and like simple math) mainly to make a point of how this is going to affect small businesses in rural America.

Ok let’s dive in.

Let’s start with the cost of the program itself. Let’s say its 8 weeks and cost $4,000

Then you pay the driver $500 a week to attend the training. That’s another $4,000 totaling $8,000.

Now if you live in rural America chances of finding a CDL training facility close that’s not completely booked up for 6 months is going to be tough. So we better include travel expenses for the employee that we want to get trained.  I’m pretty cheap so let’s say $500 a week x 8 weeks. Another $4,000. 

So far that’s a total of $12,000

We can’t forget that after our new CDL drivers get back from their training we will want to make sure that they can safely operate our vehicles and know our routes.  So we’d better plan on training them for 1-2 weeks.  For ease of calculation let’s say that the new driver is still making $500 a week and the one teaching him from our company is making $1000 a week.

There’s another $3,000 ($1000 for the new driver and $2000 for the company trainer.)

Our total is now up to $15,000 for an employer to get an employee their CDL, or to help them upgrade their CDL.

The one thing that we didn’t calculate is what it cost the company to have an employee on payroll that did NO WORK for 10 weeks. That’s 2.5 months!  I’m not even going to start getting into those calculations.

My point is that how can a small business afford to help their employees better themselves if it is going to cost them so much upfront?

That’s where Eclipse DOT comes into the equation.

We are going to be creating an on-demand online course for the classroom portion of the training that will be required after 2/7/2022.

What that means is that your employee can go get their CDL permit (CLP) and start our online course on their off time or downtime from their phone or computer.

Start their training with your team. This way you help them learn the trucks they will actually be driving and the routes they will actually be taking.

After they are proficient and trained to your satisfaction. 

You have them scheduled with our team to come in for their Behind the Wheel training.  

This should take anywhere from 1-3 days to suffice the federal regulations. (if you have trained them on your end. If you haven’t trained them then it could take much longer) 

They take their CDL test with one of our CDL testers, not their trainer. 

To save even more money send them with one of your rigs, one they are already used to driving.

And they are good to go.  

They leave our program ready to start driving for you after they visit the DMV of course.

You lose one truck and one guy for a few days and at a fraction of the price of the training program.

It’s a win-win for everyone involved.

If you have more questions on ELD and what the federal requirements are, reach out to our team here at Eclipse DOT Info@eclipse-dot.com.

To find out more about our program and how we can help you call me personally at 970-749-9449.  I’ll dop my best to get you pointed in the right direction.

Until next time, stay safe out there and keep the rubber side down.

Dan Greer


Eclipse DOT

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