NEW BRITAIN - A ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the official opening of AB CDL Driver Training Center Friday at 221 South St.
AB CDL Driver Training Center offers a broad range of classes for aspiring commercial drivers. The company also offers training in emergency first response courses and specialized training in safety and defensive driving training courses.
Owner Tom Moysey, a U.S. Army and Navy veteran and state trooper, opened his first driving school about 10 years ago in Waterford.
Moysey said when he was deciding where to bring AB CDL’s second location he looked at a map of Connecticut and put an “X” in the geographic center of the state, which landed slightly above New Britain.
Instructor Edgardo Cruz, who now serves as the director for the New Britain location, is from the area and helped Moysey look for a site.
They found the lot on 221 South St. and Moysey immediately purchased the 3.4 acre of land, equipped with 2,300 square feet of office space, and cleaned it up.
“The site hasn’t looked this good in 10 years,” Bill Carroll, economic development director for New Britain, said about the site which formally used to be a junkyard.
“They make you feel welcomed. Most other places just want your money and they’re willing to help you find a job,” Joe Camperchioli said.
Since its opening, the school has opened the door to many job opportunities for its graduates.
Over 86 percent of graduates have a job within a week after graduation, the company says.
The school has received regional recognition for its high placement rate, with graduates being hired by companies such as Bob’s Discount Stores, Burris Logistics of Rocky Hill and DW Transport of Franklin.
The starting salary for a truck driver is about $60,000 a year and can go up to $120,000.
Camperchioli and Chase Cook, both 18 years old, graduated from the 10-week driving program Friday.
“(AB CDL) doesn’t sugar coat anything. If you’re struggling, they support you and will help you study if you’re failing. They’re very hands on and personal,” Cook said.
One of the instructors at the New Britain location, Ian Ureles, has Asperger syndrome.
“When he was younger, all he wanted to do was grow up and drive trucks, but was told that was never going to happen,” Moysey said.
So Moysey took him into his program at which Ureles received his CDL driving permit and later became an instructor.
“He’s one of the best drivers and instructors we have,” he said.
Ureles said during the course of the program he makes sure all the students have the knowledge to understand the main components of the truck and the confidence to drive safely.
To learn more about AB CDL Driver Training Center, visit beasafetrucker.com.