Keeping Drivers From Freezing: Winter Gear
Life on the road can be challenging anytime of the year, but with the cold weather upon us, it’s more important than ever that drivers make sure they’re prepared for inclement weather and cold nights. Fortunately, keeping comfy in your cabin is easy if you have the right gear on hand. To get you started, here’s a list of essentials you’ll certainly want nearby.
Dress for The Weather
The secret to staying comfortable behind the wheel and through the night is to layer up with wicking, breathable materials. Layering a base (like a t-shirt) under a mid-layer (like a light sweater) and finishing with an outer layer (like a waterproof jacket) gives you the most wardrobe versatility while ensuring you’re ready for whatever climate you find yourself in. Of course, you don’t have too much room for a lot of clothes!
That’s why you should bring a long a few staple base layers that work for the cool weather and then grab just one or two mid-layers, depending on the climate you’re most likely to find yourself in. A sweater and a stow-able vest will come in handy for just about anyone, but you should decide on your outer layer(s) and their thickness/bulkiness by looking at your route.
Wear The Right Shoes
Finding yourself out in the cold with poorly insulated boots or something that isn’t waterproof is a sure problem. Wearing insulated work boots, with the right pair of cozy wool socks, is an absolute must for those headed into the wet and cold. Aside from being warm, your shoes should also be comfortable since you’ll most likely be wearing them while on the move, loading and unloading your cargo.
Prepare for Breakdowns
As a driver, you already know that you should stay prepared for the unexpected, and the winter season is the absolute best time to check your toolbox and make sure you have the right equipment handy. A trusty flashlight, a power bank, and extra batteries won’t hurt, either. Meanwhile, make sure your tire kit has everything you need — like a hammer, plug kit, gauges, thumper, iron, and jack.
Plus, the cold weather can take a toll on your battery and electrical systems, so pack some spare lights, fuses, and jumper cables just in case. You never know, even if you don’t need them, you might run into a fellow trucker who does. WD-40, duct tape, and other handy essentials are also highly useful for all types of trucking troubles.
Find Home On The Road
Making your cabin feel like home can be tough, especially if you’re working on a budget, but there are some small touches you can invest in to keep you going through the roughest days. A mini fridge, coffee pot, and a microwave and/or toaster oven will soon become your best friends when you surely tire of gas station foods. With the right cooking tools, like a slow cooker, you can have a great meal no matter where you’re at.
Meanwhile, stowing an electric blanket can help you feel toasty warm even on the coldest night, and a grooming kit can be the extra pick-me-up you need to feel good and look sharp everywhere you go.
A mobile wifi hotspot can help you stay connected while on the road and even allow you to browse the internet in your downtime for less than the cost of phone data, but you know what’s even better? Many truckers swear by satellite based communications, as they work even where signal is spotty, and that can offer greater connectivity and peace of mind for your next long-haul.
Meanwhile, a great laptop can be even better than a TV, acting as a multi-functional work and entertainment device in one. Or, you can setup a TV and maybe even your favorite game console if you really want to up your free-time enjoyment. It’s truly these little touches that can make your life on the road this season a bit more enjoyable, so what are you planning on doing?