When you spend as much time on the road as a long-haul trucker does, there is some trucking gear you just can’t do without. Today’s trucks contain many modern amenities, but they can also be made more comfortable with a few simple additions.
From clothing to tools and equipment to basic comfort items, here are some suggestions for things to make truck driving easier and safer:
Proper Clothing & Footwear
- A pair of insulated work boots – When you’re driving for hours at a time, it’s essential that your feet stay warm and comfortable. Insulated work boots will ensure that your feet don’t go numb and keep them safe during loading and unloading.
- A pair of work gloves – The same goes for your hands. When you’re gripping a wheel for many hours, it’s important that your hands stay warm and agile. Work gloves will ensure you maintain a safe grip in any weather.
- Sunwear – For daytime drives, it’s crucial to keep a pair of polarized sunglasses on hand to deal with glare. A hat can also help keep the sun off your face and prevent sunburn.
- Winter gear – In case of emergency, having warm winter clothing on hand is highly recommended. For more information on truck driver emergency kits, click here.
Essential Tools & Equipment
- Tool kit – It’s an excellent idea to keep a basic tool kit on hand in case you need to make any minor repairs. Don’t forget to include a flashlight in case you run in to any problems at night.
- Tire kit – A tire kit is a must for any big rig driver. The size of a rig means that tires are under an immense amount of stress. Make sure you have gauges to check tire pressure in addition to a plug kit, hammer, thumper, jack, and an iron.
- Spares – It’s always a good idea to have extra equipment on hand such as spare fuses, headlights, and light bulbs.
- Duct tape – You never know when you might need duct tape! Keep a roll in your glove compartment just in case.
- Reflective safety vest – In case you need to pull over at night, make sure you have a reflective safety vest to wear. This will alert other night time drivers to your presence.
- CB radio – With a CB radio, you’ll always be able to contact other truckers and emergency services.
- First aid kit – A first aid kit is a must for any driver.
Basic Comfort Items
- Power converter – With a power converter, you’ll be able to keep small appliances in your cab to make it feel like home.
- Mini-fridge – You can keep healthy beverages, fruits and vegetables in a mini-fridge and avoid filling up on gas station snacks.
- Slow cooker – By investing in a slow cooker, you can enjoy healthy meals while on the road. Just fill it up with fresh meat and vegetables at the beginning of your drive, and when you take a break, you’ll have a delicious meal ready for you!
- Electric blanket – Keep warm and cozy with an electric blanket. This is an especially good idea if you do a lot of night drives.
- Grooming kit – A simple grooming kit with a razor blade, comb and toothbrush is nice to have on hand for extra-long drives. You can freshen up at stops along the way!
With a little planning and some small investments, you can make life on the road a lot more comfortable. What’s more, small comforts contribute to overall safety and mental health, so make sure you take the time to properly equip your cab with proper trucking gear!
If you’re a driver with Northwest and you’d like more information on road safety, we encourage you to visit our Driver’s Portal.