By Pete Demetriou

LOS ANGELES ( — For the first time in three years, the California Highway Patrol is looking for a new class of recruits.

KNX 1070’s Pete Demetriou reports the CHP is accepting applications online for what what one officer describes as an extremely competitive and rigorous process.

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Starting Tuesday and extending through Jan. 5, an estimated 60,000 people are expected to apply online for the September 2013 academy class.

But Officer Ming Hsu with the CHP Recruitment Program warned only about 2 percent of applicants will be accepted into the academy – and from there, the dropout rate is around 40 percent.

“They either drop out on their own or they fail out of the testing that we do,” Hsu said. “Our training is very difficult and not every one makes it.”

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The physical fitness requirements alone are a major factor in why people get a failing grade, Hsu added.

Only about 150 cadets are chosen for the September class, but those who successfully complete the academy can expect to begin a new career with a starting salary of about $60,000 a year.

“You essentially go to Sacramento for 27 weeks,” Hsu said. “If you’re successful you promote to the officer position and you hit the field.”

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Click here to visit the CHP website for more information on how to apply.