Best CDL Trucking Schools in Kentucky – 2022 Round-up

| Last Updated: November 20, 2021

Kentucky is a hotspot for manufacturing different products and equipment. From mechanical parts to pharmaceuticals and medicines, the region produces a variety of export products. These products need to be transported within and outside the state. 

Expensive, fragile, and dangerous materials like aerospace parts and hazardous chemicals need to be transported to and from Kentucky. Therefore, a strong transportation system backed by experienced and well trained commercial drivers is crucial. 

As a result, there are plenty of CDL Trucking Schools in Kentucky that aim to provide the necessary training.

Photo credit:

How to Get a CDL in Kentucky

The process of getting a CDL in Kentucky is not complicated and matches the requirements of other states. The applicant must be 18 years of age to hold a CDL in Kentucky and drive a commercial vehicle within Kentucky. However, for interstate driving and dealing with hazardous material, the age requirement is at least 21 years.

A Department of Transportation (DOT) physical exam is required, which could be obtained from any DOT Physical Lab or a DOT-certified physician.

After that, you need to submit the DOT medical card, your application, and a self-certification, certifying that you will only operate in one of the four categories of the CDL. Ten business days are required for processing the application before you can take a CDL permit test.

The CDL permit test is a series of written tests, including general knowledge, air brakes, and combination vehicles. Upon passing the written tests, a CDL permit is given to the applicant. 

The next step is a skill test. Various schools help train for this test. The test’s main components are a pre-trip inspection test, basic maneuvering skills test, and a driving test. This costs $50 for CDL A test. 

After you have passed your skill test, you can go to your local license branch to get your CDL license issued. The applicants must not be revoked, suspended, disqualified, or canceled from driving in Kentucky or any other state to qualify for the license.

Photo credit:

CDL Variations Available in Kentucky

There are three variations of CDL available in Kentucky. Each needs specific training and allows the holder to operate certain types of vehicles. These variations are discussed below:

Class A CDL

A CDL A is necessary for operating a vehicle or any combination of vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 26,001 pounds or more. The GVWR of the towed vehicle should be more than 10,000 pounds. 

Class B CDL

The following list of vehicles require a CDL B for handling, operation, and driving.

  • A straight truck with two or more axles and a GVWR of 26,001 pounds or more.
  • Any other vehicle with two or more axles and weighing 26,001 pounds or more.
  • A pulling vehicle with a maximum GVWR of 10,000 pounds.
  • A single-vehicle designed for transportation of at least 16 people, including the driver, and weighing 26,001 pounds or more.

Photo credit:

Class C CDL

Vehicles carrying hazardous materials that require placarding and have a GVWR of a maximum of 26,001 pounds or a vehicle designed to transport 16 or more passengers (driver included) weighing not more than 26,001 pounds need a CDL C for operation and driving in Kentucky.

Additionally, some endorsements entail the holder to drive certain types of hauls. You can get these endorsements along with your CDL in Kentucky. These include Double/Triple Trailer, Passenger, Tank, Hazardous Materials, and School Bus.

Review of the Best CDL Trucking Schools in Kentucky

Due to the demand for skilled CDL drivers, various schools in Kentucky provide the necessary training for CDL driving. Numerous courses are offered across the states that impart staunch working knowledge and skills required to handle, drive, and maintain a commercial vehicle.

This section takes a detailed look at some of the best CDL Trucking Schools in Kentucky. 

1. Driver Resource Center School

Trucking School Details

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By Diverse Resource Center school

Offering one certification for CDL A training only, Driver Resource Center School gives full attention to each student. Classroom training is followed by road and skilled training to equip students with theoretical knowledge and practical experience. 

In the 40-hour classroom training, trainees are taught to endure extreme driving conditions and night-time driving as well as other crucial skills like map and highway safety. A 120-hour road training follows, which includes a pre-trip inspection, vehicle management, road backing (45° and 95°), space management, parking, and rural and urban driving. At the end of this course, trainees are well-aware of road safety and commercial driving.

Program Details

This school works with several trucking companies and even provides lifetime job placement. US Express, Melton, and Convent Transport are some of the many companies that the school is associated with. Upon successful graduation, the school offers job placement with one of these companies. 

But that’s not all; even if you are an alumnus or previous graduate of their partner schools in need of a job, all you have to do is hit them up, and they will find you one. Jobs in various capacities like over-the-road, LTL, dedicated, team, and regional driving are available with them.

2. Truck America Training

Trucking School Details

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By Truck America Training

Truck America Training is another popular school in Kentucky that provides specialized training in CDL A. It also offers a 160-hour-long training course divided into classroom and behind-the-wheel training. Expert instructors work with small classroom sizes throughout three and a half weeks to prepare them for their CDL A tests and impart crucial knowledge for safe and efficient road procedures.

Various aspects of the training include driving skills like backing, parking, and turning to equip students with range skills as well as map reading, compliance, trip planning, and maintaining logbooks. This is a full-time course that individuals above the age of 18 can take.

Program Details

One of the best things about this school is that it prepares its students according to the state laws of commercial driving. Financial aid is also provided to those who qualify. Graduates can find jobs as entry-level drivers with various transportation companies. The school provides help with job placement as well. It could either get you a job at one of their associated trucking companies or help you with your application and selection process elsewhere. 

Graduates of the school have built successful careers at renowned transportation companies like Maverick, Werner, Averitt, May Trucking, and many more. Students are encouraged to look into what each company has to offer and decide based on their suitability.

3. Bluegrass CDL Academy

Trucking School Details

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By Bluegrass CDL Academy

Bluegrass CDL Academy is the only school in Lexington providing a four-week premier CDL A training. This program, too, spans over 160 credit hours that are broken down into five sections. Training consists of classroom learning, range, and driving skills. 

Students get a hold of the basic operation, vehicular management, maintenance, coupling/uncoupling, and non-vehicular activities. Section five is solely dedicated to teaching non-vehicular activities, like personal health and safety, trip planning, accident procedures, etc. By the end of the course, students are well-equipped to take their CDL A exam and pass with flying colors.

Program Details

This school accepts various payment options and is also associated with many agencies in Kentucky that may finance the training of individuals who have no payment options. The overall tuition fee totals to around $4500. Lexington has benefited greatly from the first trucking school as it also offers day and evening classes for its students.

4. Lake Cumberland CDL Training School

Trucking School Details

After spending years on the road, I had a lot of time to think about the hardships that came with the trucking industry. I realized there was an opportunity to lend a hand a create a resource for truckers by truckers. With the help of my tech-savvy son, I built Trucker Geek as a way to show people that becoming a driver doesn’t need to be a stressful headache.