Tag Archives: Driver Training Winnipeg

Women Becoming Commonplace as Professional Drivers

Next time you’re on the road and you happen look in to the cab of a semi –truck, don’t be surprised if you see a smiling woman’s face.  At First Class Training Centre we are excited about the trend of the growing numbers of women choosing to become a professional driver.

First Class Driver Training for Women

The career of a professional driver is rewarding, challenging, and inclusive.  As the North American economy heats up and driver shortages become more critical, the industry is lucky to see more women enter the workforce.

First Class is the leader in Class 1 training for everyone.  Our facilities are bright, modern and welcoming.  We continue to be committed to excellence in everything we do.  If you are interested in driver training in Winnipeg or rural Manitoba, check out First Class and ask a graduate about us.  They’ll tell you that our professionalism, attention to detail and the best instructor to student ratio in the business makes a difference.

Here’s to you for making the right choice for driver education.

The Class in Class 1 at First Class Training Centre

At First Class Training Centre, we like to think that we put the class back into Class 1 Driver Training.  Let’s talk about “class” from 3 different perspectives.

Excellence in Driver Training

1.  Class is where you go to learn.  Our “classes” at First Class offer the some of the best student to teacher ratio in the country.  All of our instructors have years of experience in the trucking industry and our curriculum is industry recognized as one of the best in the business
2.  First Class is really First Class. Everything we do at First Class is done with the highest standards in the industry.  Our facilities in Brandon and Winnipeg are modern and bright, and the equipment you train on is the latest generation tractor trailers.  We also offer the only mobile training centre in Manitoba.   We treat you with respect and have more one on one time than any other truck training provider.
3. It’s about giving you class. We know that you have made a big commitment to get your Class 1 Driver Training through us.   By the time you finish your training, you will have developed the self confidence to be great as a professional driver.  We want you to be proud of your career and build your confidence to be the best you can be.

Back to School is Just Around the Corner – Are You Ready to go back to school for a Career as a Professional Truck Driver?

Many people think of the start of September as the time when kids go back to school.

Maybe you have a young family, and find yourself in a job that doesn’t seem to fit or pay that well.  You’re having trouble to make ends meet.   Maybe it’s time to think of your next career move to start making some real money.

A career as a professional truck driver is rewarding and pays well.  The good news is that there is a definite need for graduates of Class 1 licensing.   Better news is that First Class Driver Training is the most respected and well run training school in the province of Manitoba. First Class Driver Training has offices in Winnipeg and Brandon and offers mobile training to most parts of Manitoba.

First Class Driver Training is the industry leader in driver education in Winnipeg and Manitoba.  Our graduates are successful in finding work all across Canada and the United States. We are PVI accredited and have one of the best teacher to student ratios in the business.

Class 3 vs Class 1. Invest a little more to get more.

At First Class Training Centre, we get many inquiries for students seeking information about training to attain a Class 3 (tandem axle truck) licence. A Class 3 licence allows the holder to only operate a dump truck or 5-ton straight truck. And if they do pull a trailer, it can’t exceed 4,600 kg (10,000 lbs).

Potential students of First Class are considering a career move that will involve some sort of driver training. Short term thinking may limit the potential of a student to maximize their career.  As an example. If the job driving a Class 3 vehicle disappears, wouldn’t it be better to have more options than less for your next career move? As well, having a Class 1 license will generally move you up the pay scale quicker even if the unit you are driving is only requires a Class 3 designation..

Class #1 & #3 License Comparison
Class #1 Class #3
Can operate any class of license except motorcycle Can operate only a tandem axle truck and passenger vehicles
Probability of getting job: Excellent Probability of getting job: Fair
Training Cost: $8400 Training Cost: $1600
Course Time: 244 Hours Course Time: 20 Hours

Some companies will only hire drivers with a Class 1 license.  This makes total sense as a Class 1 driver can operate any vehicle.  Class 3 drivers are limited in what they can and can’t drive.

First Class Driver Training is the industry leader in driver education in Winnipeg and the province of Manitoba.  Our graduates are successful in job placements throughout North America. We are MPI accredited, and have a proven track record of success.

What Are the Requirements to be Employed in the Trucking Industry?

According to Service Canada, the past few years have shown an increase in the number of truck drivers in Canada. The increase is due primarily to Canada’s overall economic growth and more specifically, growth in international trade, particularly with the United States. Job prospects in this occupation are considered fair and the number of truck drivers is expected to increase slightly in the coming years.

Increased job opportunities will result primarily from the need to replace retiring truck drivers, with the 2011 National Household Survey data reflecting 54.5% of employed truck drivers are between the ages of 45 and 64.

While the job opportunities may be there, you have to know yourself and recognize whether you will enjoy the lifestyle that goes along with being a truck driver. Some examples of occupational titles include: bulk goods truck driver; dump truck driver; flatbed truck driver; logging truck driver; long-haul truck driver; moving van driver; tow truck driver; etc.

Whether you choose to work as a long-haul truck driver or short-haul truck driver, a good portion of your time will be spent alone and possibly away from home, friends, and family for extended periods. If that sounds like it would suit you fine, you can rest assured that opportunities exist in the trucking industry, and a stable, long-term career is essentially guaranteed.

Employment requirements can vary, and oftentimes, on-the-job training is provided, however completion of secondary school is usually required. It’s probably also beneficial to have a good driving record!

Driver licensing requirements vary from province to province, but certain things are standard, such as the air brake endorsement requirement for drivers who operate vehicles equipped with air brakes, and the transportation of dangerous good (TDG) certification is required for drivers who transport hazardous products or dangerous goods.

The only thing that you need to decide is whether a stable career in a growing industry is something that appeals to you, and you can talk to us about the rest, we’ll steer you in the right direction!

Long Haul Trucking

If the thought of spending long hours on the open highway, criss-crossing Canada or the USA alone in the cab of an 18-wheeler excites you, you should consider a career in long haul trucking.

For the right type of person, long haul truck driving is a great job, but it’s not for everyone.

The Perfect Fit
Class 1 Long Haul Driver TrainingThe right type of person for long haul driving is self-motivated, loves travel, and enjoys being alone. It’s ideal for independent people who can work without supervision, and still get the job done. The pressure of scheduling while complying with all of the relevant laws regarding rest time, can be quite complicated. Only the most success-minded people are able to do the job at a high level.

There’s nobody out there on the road with you (except other drivers), so you’ll have to be able to spend long periods of time by yourself, with nothing but your thoughts and the radio for entertainment.

The most important quality in a long haul driver, in our experience, is a love of travel. It’s not a job for homebodies. The best truck drivers enjoy the freedom of the open road, and while they might enjoy the comforts of home, are equally happy out on the road.

Requirements
In Manitoba, you’ll need a Class 1 License to drive a transport truck, and undergo a regular medical examination. To work in the United States, you’ll need to be at least 21 years of age. You’ll need a good driving record, and in some cases you might have to pass a criminal background check and drug testing.

First Class Training Centre has instructors who can prepare you for your career on the road. We’re Manitoba’s Premiere Truck Driving School, and we have decades of hands-on experience in the business. Contact us online or call Toll Free 1-(855) 632-5302.

Short Haul Trucking

When you think of a career as a truck driver, chances are you envision endless kilometers of highway, truck stop dinners, and days away from home.

While there are a lot of opportunities for “over the road” long haul truckers, there are also jobs that can keep you closer to home.

Short haul drivers generally work in a constrained geographical area, which allows them to be home each night, which is ideal for young families. Many people would forego the generally higher paying long-haul gigs in favour of the domestic stability that short-haul driving affords.

Unlike long-haul jobs, short-haul driving is much more routine in nature. The company you work for will likely have a steady roster of clients it does work for, so you’ll be visiting the same locations more frequently.

The type of equipment you use will be more varied in short haul trucking. You may work for a company that uses smaller vehicles and require only a Class 3 Manitoba License (typically easier to obtain than a Class 1). You may operate a dump trailer as part of your work, and even the biggest trucks you drive will be shorter, as they are “day cabs”, trucks without a sleeping compartment.

In addition to the ability to be home daily, some people simply prefer the varied pace and variety of assignments they find working as short haul drivers. You will need special training and licensing for the job, as well as a regular physical and medical exam.

If you’re considering a career in short haul trucking, visit First Class Training Centre in Winnipeg or Brandon. We’re Manitoba’s Premiere Truck Driving School. Contact us online or call Toll Free 1-(855) 632-5302.

Look Out! Summer Brings New Challenges on the Road

Summer’s coming, and with it longer days, warmer nights, and a whole lot of things to enjoy.

Unfortunately, it brings some worries, too, especially if you spend your days driving a truck. Here are some things you need to be prepared for:

Busier Highways
Summer is vacation time, and the roads are going to fill up with travellers who have recreation on their minds. Many will be travelling in unfamiliar locations and operating vehicles that they don’t spend a lot of time behind the wheel of. Be especially mindful of RVs and 4-wheelers towing trailers, and give these drivers as much space as you can.

Harsh Climate in the Cab
It’s going to be uncomfortable, especially out here on the Prairies, where the sun is hot and the days are long. Make sure your truck’s air conditioning works before the season starts, and make sure you have sunglasses, appropriate clothing, and that you stay hydrated, so you can stay healthy and alert.

Maintenance Requirements
Basic vehicle maintenance requirements are heightened in harsh weather – hot or cold. Make sure that your tires are properly inflated (remember to check them when they’re cold, as pressure is likely to go way up when driving in hot conditions), that your truck’s fluids are fresh and at optimum levels. Don’t forget the windshield wash – you’ll be scrubbing lots of bugs off your rig, especially early in the season.

Take it Slow
Remember, no load is worth endangering your life. If traffic’s bad, or you’re too hot, or tempers are flaring, sit back, take a deep breath and a big swig of water, and drive on. Let cooler heads (yours) prevail.

With over 50 years of experience in the truck transport industry, our instructors have seen it all! We’re happy to pass along our tips and tricks, both in the classroom and if you want to contact us.

Information Sessions – Thompson, MB

Today is the day!

We will be holding 2 information sessions today in Thompson, Manitoba for drivers that are interested in receiving Class 1 or Class 3 Driver Training and becoming a professional driver.

The information sessions will take place in the TRCC Multi Purpose Room at 3:00 pm and again at 7:00 pm.

Interested in arranging a group driver training session? Give us a call at 204-632-5302.

Fighting Fatigue – Staying Awake (and Healthy) During Night Runs

Driving at night has a lot of advantages for a long-haul truck driver.  There’s a lot less traffic on the road, making it easier to earn money when you’re paid by the kilometer. Fuel costs are reduced, and you’ll use the brakes a lot less frequently.

Unfortunately, the human body isn’t designed to be awake at night.  Our internal clocks are dictated by the circadian rhythm of the sun – and haven’t really gotten the hang of the changes that modern living and electric light have brought about.  As a result, fatigue is often a factor in nighttime driving accidents.  Here are some things you can do to keep fatigue from being a factor for you.

Keep a Regular Sleeping Cycle

If you drive a lot of nights, resist the urge to stay awake too long when the daylight hits.  You’ll naturally wake up a bit when the sun rises.  Fight this by sleeping with blinds on the windows.  On your days off, don’t completely “flip” your sleeping cycle – your body will get confused.

Don’t Rely on Caffeine or Carbohydrates

Coffee and sugary foods are both short-term solutions to fatigue, and both deliver a “crash” after only a short time.  Another dose might be effective, but for an even shorter term.  Stick to healthy foods – your energy level will be more consistent, and your waistline will thank you.

Get Exercise

A fit driver is a more capable driver.  Long haul trucking can make it difficult to maintain a healthy lifestyle – you need to go out of your way to ensure that you are in top shape to take on the rigors of the road.  A quick run around the truck when refueling or at a rest stop can get your blood flowing for the next few kilometers, and a good exercise regimen will pay dividends for years to come.

If You’re Too Tired to Drive – Don’t

No matter what your logbook says, fatigue impairs your ability to drive.  Pull over and take a nap – nobody will fault you for putting your safety, and everyone else’s, first.

When you take driver training At First Class Training Centre in Winnipeg, you’ll get the benefit of highly experienced trainers with decades of industry experience.   Call us Toll Free 1-855-632-5302.