If it weren’t for truck drivers, modern society would cease to function. Just take a trip on any highway in America and look around you. There are so many different types of trucks used to transport goods from one place to another, and these trucks form the lifeblood of our economy.
So what types of vehicles are used in the trucking industry? There’s the tractor, which refers to the cab and drive axle portion of a large capacity truck and trailer. The cab pulls the trailer, so it’s commonly called the tractor. There are three types of tractors including Yard, Day and Sleeper. Yards are used to move stuff around trucking yards. Day tractors are used for short haul trucking whereas the driver will be home in a couple hours. Sleepers are the ones where truckers can sleep in their cabs overnight. These are great for long haul trucking, and you’re likely to see sleepers parked overnight at truck stops along the highway. Sleepers are like homes away from home for many truckers, often featuring amenities inside that make them livable for a couple nights on the road.
If you hear the term “bobtail” in trucking circles, this refers to the front of a tractor trailer combo. A “flatbed” is a trailer without an enclosed portion on the back. The back is flat and open to the weather; these are often referred to as stake beds.
Besides the big rigs, truckers also utilize panel vans and “HotShots.” Panel vans are often thought of as “box trucks” and they can be anywhere from as small as a mini-van to a large box on the bed of a truck– certain moving vans are a good example of these. As for “HotShots,” this term refers to a pickup truck with a larger load capacity than a personal truck. Usually, “HotShots” are single axle 1 to 3 ton trucks that can carry heavy loads. They may have dual tires in the back to help handle their loads.