Sticky Banner of Desktop Sticky Banner of Mobile
Menu Close

Truck Driver Essentials: 19 Must-Have Items For The Road – A Matrack Insight

Delivering goods and materials across the nation, you play an essential part in the transportation sector as a truck driver. Over 7.6 million people are employed in the trucking business in the US, with 3.5 million of them being professional truck drivers, according to the American Trucking Association. These long-distance drivers log endless hours on the road and frequently navigate varied terrains and weather patterns. They must be equipped to handle any event that may occur while traveling.

It can be a challenging and physically taxing profession to drive a truck. Compared to the general population, truck drivers have a higher prevalence of obesity, hypertension, and sleep disturbances, according to a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The passive nature of the job and the lack of access to good food options when traveling might exacerbate these health problems.

Truck drivers must deal with the physical demands of their work and the danger of accidents and injury. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that heavy truck crashes resulted in 4,136 fatalities in 2018. Four thousand nine hundred seventy-three people died due to these collisions, 72% of them were passengers in other cars. Truck drivers must follow the required safety procedures, such as maintaining their vehicles, being ready for emergencies, and staying safe while driving.

Truck drivers can work safely, healthily, and effectively with the necessary tools and equipment. 

Guide for Truck Driver’s Essential

These 19 must-have items can help you manage the difficulties of long-haul truck driving and ensure a successful and fulfilling career. They range from essential safety gear to wholesome snacks and a first aid kit.

Permit and credentials for trucking 

You should always bring these documents when traveling. If you are stopped by the police or are registering at a weigh station, you will need this information. Included in the documentation should be the following:

  • Commercial driver’s license (CDL): A specialized permit allows an individual to operate a commercial motor vehicle (CMV). To obtain a CDL, an individual must pass a written test, a driving skills test, and a road test.
  • Medical examiner’s certificate: Truck drivers must pass a medical exam every two years to ensure they are physically fit to operate a CMV. A certified medical examiner must perform the exam.
  • Hazardous materials endorsement (HME): This endorsement allows a driver to transport dangerous materials in a CMV. To obtain an HME, an individual must pass a written test and meet other Department of Transportation requirements (DOT) requirements.
  • International Registration Plan (IRP): This permit allows a trucking company to register its vehicles in multiple states. The IRP is administered by the International Fuel Tax Association (IFTA).
  • Unified Carrier Registration (UCR): The UCR allows trucking companies to operate in multiple states. It is administered by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
  • International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA): This agreement allows trucking companies to report and pay fuel taxes in multiple states. The IFTA administers it.

Tire Pressure Gauge

A good tire pressure gauge is one truck driving requirement that you should consider. You may not know it, but having a tire pressure gauge is essential for road safety and efficiency.

Keeping track of truck tire pressure allows you to fully control the trucks and ensure the safety of the payload.

Low tire pressure can be risky since the vehicle becomes more difficult to operate in different road conditions, whereas overinflated tires put drivers at risk of blowouts and other mishaps.

Tire pressure monitoring is also essential for reducing fuel use over long distances.

Driving on properly inflated truck tires can improve performance and prevent rim wear and tear. A reliable tire pressure gauge is essential for truck drivers.

Warning triangles 

Trucks are frequently parked on the sides of highways and roads. With basic safety procedures, you avoid being spotted at night and causing an accident. A reflective triangle is one of the most important objects for truck drivers to notify other vehicles of potential risks such as truck breakdowns, nighttime visibility for stopped trucks, or routes around truck-related obstructions.

A reflective triangle placed at least 100 feet behind the truck can help warn other drivers to be cautious when approaching the car. It also raises highway safety standards and may result in fewer accidents. They are lightweight, straightforward, and come in various sizes and styles. When necessary, having reflecting triangles around can help to create a safer workplace.

Dashcam

A dashcam is a must-have for truck drivers to keep them safe and prepared. Dashcams adds an added layer of safety for truckers like you by acting as a witness in the event of a crash or incident. It allows you to record any events that occur while driving, which you can subsequently review or use as evidence in the event of a liability dispute.

Furthermore, it shows you live footage of vehicle blind spots, giving you peace of mind and allowing you to make smarter decisions on the road.

Matrack dashcam supports the CAN bus, 4G LTE, and Wi-Fi networks. It features two front-facing cameras to see what happens outside and inside the vehicle. This dashcam includes driver-side and lane-side cameras, providing a comprehensive remote view of the truck.

Flashlight

Flashlights are one of the essential gadgets for truck drivers on long journeys. It can not only illuminate your vehicle during nighttime deliveries, but it can also assist you in an emergency. You may need to investigate weird noises coming from the truck, locate a fallen object, or even look outside for any impediments. A flashlight guarantees that you are prepared for whatever may occur on your path and that you can solve any potential concerns quickly and efficiently.

Being equipped with a flashlight can not only be helpful for you, but it can be useful when other drivers on the road need help.

Waterproof Boots

One of the essential truck driver equipment is a nice pair of waterproof boots. Waterproof boots have numerous advantages. Weather protection can be beneficial; drivers may be stepping through mud and mire to check under their trucks.

Waterproof boots provide excellent traction on wet roads, allowing you to be more balanced and in control of your truck while making deliveries. They offer additional insulation to keep you warm in chilly conditions. It protects your feet from heavy or sharp objects you may encounter while completing routine tasks like checking oil levels and tire pressure or troubleshooting any problems with your truck’s brakes or exhaust.

With a solid pair of waterproof boots, you can safely maneuver around any rugged terrain and get back on track in no time if your truck breaks down during rainy weather.

High-Contrast Jackets

Another need for any truck driver is a high-visibility jacket. Truck drivers are more visible and recognizable to other drivers and pedestrians when wearing such brightly colored gear, especially at night. Maintaining heightened awareness helps keep you safe from moving automobiles on the road. These jackets’ vivid orange color is perfect for truck drivers who routinely operate their vehicles in low-light situations like rain, fog, or darkness. To protect your safety and the safety of other drivers on the road, you must always wear high-visibility jackets while driving.

Work Gloves

Work gloves shield you from potentially dangerous objects such as tools, jagged edges, fuel or oil risks, and any heavy objects that require stability and grip when lifting and maneuvering.

They are also helpful in shielding your hands from severe weather, such as snow or heavy rain. You may also use work gloves to improve dexterity when performing detailed activities such as balancing loads or dealing with cargo that may shift during your journey.

Multi-utility tool

A multi-utility tool is a tiny device containing numerous tools, such as a knife, pliers, screwdrivers, etc. Truck drivers may benefit from having a multi-utility tool in various situations. If a truck driver, for example, encounters a technical issue with their vehicle, you can use a multi-utility tool to make temporary repairs or alterations. It can also be helpful for routine maintenance tasks such as tightening bolts and cutting wire. A multi-utility tool can also benefit personal needs, such as opening packages or preparing food.

Truck drivers must have multi-utility tools. This tool can use them for various activities, including removing difficult roadside detritus and cutting open shipments or metal pallets. This helpful tool improves driving safety by swiftly and efficiently cutting through any obstructions you may encounter.

Cleaning Supplies

You frequently operate in areas where dirt, dust, and debris quickly collect. As a result, critical truck driver supplies such as cleaning goods must be carried with you at all times to clean up your truck swiftly and surrounds, removing safety dangers and establishing better working conditions. Cleaning products on hand helps you keep your vehicle clean and inspections running smoothly. Interior truck cleaning supplies, such as all-purpose cleaners and sponges, to exterior truck washing and waxing items, such as car wash soaps, detailing brushes, and microfiber towels, are examples of this.

Truck accessories, such as air fresheners or bug repellants, can help improve the vehicle’s general comfort and air quality.

Cell Phone Charger

A cell phone charger is vital for staying connected with family and employers while completing daily tasks quickly.

A charger can help to reduce downtime caused by low battery power by letting you charge phones while resting at truck stops. It also allows you to call the dispatcher if you require further assistance.

You can always keep your phone charged with a charger. This gadget will allow you to use navigation or route planner apps without interruption, ensuring you stay on the proper routes and avoid getting lost, increasing your chances of reaching your destination on time.

Bluetooth Headset

Bluetooth headphones should be included in your trucker basics due to their numerous perks. This gadget is convenient and straightforward, allowing you to make phone calls while driving hands-free, eliminating distractions, and letting you focus on the road.

Furthermore, such gadgets can be used for navigation, creating a safe environment for you and others on the road. You can also use them to listen to music or podcasts to break up those long hours of traveling alone.

Tablet or laptop

Laptops and tablets are truck driver necessities since you may use them for various tasks.

Without an internet connection, you can watch movies and TV shows. Talk with friends and family, check emails, and visit job sites.

Electric Coffee or Tea Maker

One of the things any truck driver needs is an electric tea or coffee maker.

When you’re on the road for a long time, it can be challenging to find good coffee, which can negatively affect your performance and how much you enjoy the trip as a whole.

Additionally, you may purchase harmful substitutes like energy drinks and sugary snacks without access to hot beverages. Using an electric tea or coffee maker can lessen your need for an inadequate replacement and provide you the much-needed peace of mind that you can access something pleasant throughout your tiresome journeys.

Most electric tea and coffee makers are lightweight and portable, making them simple to transport. No matter how distant you are from a truck stop, you can still create a hot beverage wherever you are.

The gadgets provide the luxury of preparing the ideal cup of coffee in terms of strength, flavor, and ease.

Non-Perishable Food Items and Water

Always have non-perishable food on hand, as you’ll frequently be in areas with little access to restaurants or supermarkets.

Trail mixes, canned soups, and protein bars are examples of portable non-perishable foods for truck drivers that don’t need refrigeration. Additionally, they keep you fuelled throughout exhausting days and give you the required energy boost while driving at night.

They also provide mental tranquility by relieving tension from worrying about where you might get your next meal. Additionally, you will only need to stop a little, which will speed up and improve the efficiency of your trip.

No matter where you are, these snacks will help you keep a balanced diet and provide a dependable supply of nourishment.

Remember to bring lots of water, too.

First-aid kit

When traveling long distances outside populated areas, where there might not be a hospital or clinic nearby, having a first aid bag on board is extremely useful.

If an accident occurred on the road, having a first aid kit in the vehicle might be the difference between life and death.

You can immediately assess the situation, provide primary care using the supplies in your first aid box, and seek medical attention if necessary in case of minor injuries or crises.

You should put the following items in your first aid kit:

  • Gauze pads 
  • Bandages
  • Tape 
  • Antiseptic wipes 
  • Antibiotic ointment, and 
  • Over-the-counter drugs (like motion sickness pills and headache medicine)

Toiletries

Due to the long rides and inconsistent services at truck stops, you must carry toiletries as one of your trucking necessities. Basic supplies like hand sanitizer, wet wipes, and toilet paper can fall under this category. Since truck stops generally stock a small selection of things and you can only occasionally return to a store when you run out of something, you might need different toothpaste, razors, and soap.

Plus, it aids in keeping you exceptionally clean throughout your voyage.

When making deliveries, cleanliness is essential for your health and safety and for maintaining positive client relations when you enter homes and businesses.

Since you might not come across gas stations or rest stops, bring an emergency restroom container.

Sleeping accessories

It would be best if you had trucker basics like sleeping bags and pillows to get enough sleep to drive safely and maintain alert while working. No matter where your journey takes you, they assist you in getting a good night’s sleep.

A lovely sleeping bag can keep you warm and cozy during those chilly, lonely nights on the road. Finding the right pillow is also essential since it supports your neck while you sleep.

Shower sandals

Truck drivers must own shower flip-flops. Although truck stops include showers, they are frequently not the cleanest locations. Owning a pair of shower flip-flops will help prevent bacteria from growing on your feet, filth, and grime from a long day of traveling. Additionally, they are helpful when you need to exit the truck quickly at truck stops, rest areas, and stopover locations.

Conclusion

Thanks to this blog, a list of trucker’s necessities by Matrack, it would be best if you were more equipped for your upcoming trip. Every driver is unique and has their wants and preferences. But when packing for your future journey, keep this list in mind if you’re new to trucking or need a reminder of what you should always have on hand.