Location(s) of Program: PRCC Poplarville Campus and PRCC The Lowery A. Woodall Technology Center Hattiesburg
Brief Description of Program: Commercial Truck Driving is a four-week instructional program that prepares individuals to drive trucks and other commercial vehicles. Instruction includes operating diesel-powered vehicles, loading and unloading cargo, reporting delays or accidents on the road, verifying loads against shipping records, and maintaining necessary records. Applicants will earn a Certificate of Completion from workforce training.
Essential Requirements of a person in this career field: Most companies require their truck drivers to have a high school diploma or equivalent.
All long-haul truck drivers must have a commercial driver’s license (CDL). Qualifications for obtaining a CDL vary by state but generally include passing both a knowledge test and a driving test. States have the right to refuse to issue a CDL to anyone who has had a CDL suspended by another state. Drivers can get endorsements to their CDL that show their ability to drive a specialized type of vehicle.
Truck drivers transporting hazardous materials (HAZMAT) must have a hazardous materials endorsement (H). Getting this endorsement requires passing an additional knowledge test and a background check.
Program Requirements for Admission:
- Demographic/Application form from The Woodall Center
- DOT Physical and DOT Drug Screen
- Class A Learner’s Permit
- Valid MS Driver’s License
- No more than two traffic violations in three years
- No drug or violent crime in the last seven years
- Driving record from the DMV
Contact Information for the Program:
Possible Careers in this Program: Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers transport goods from one location to another. Most tractor-trailer drivers are long-haul drivers and operate trucks with a gross vehicle weight (GVW) capacity—that is, the combined weight of the vehicle, passengers, and cargo—exceeding 26,000 pounds. These drivers deliver goods over intercity routes, sometimes spanning several states.
What a student can expect from a career in this field: Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers typically do the following:
- Drive long distances
- Report to a dispatcher any incidents encountered on the road
- Follow all applicable traffic laws
- Secure cargo for transport, using ropes, blocks, chains, or covers
- Inspect their trailers before and after the trip, and record any defects they find
- Maintain a log of their working hours, following all federal and state regulations
- Report serious mechanical problems to the appropriate personnel
- Keep their trucks and associated equipment clean and in good working order