A trucker's job is hardly ever easy, and there's seemingly always one or two "little things" that crop up in the course of a trip. Sometimes these are just minor annoyances, and other times they are major stumbling blocks that can prevent you from getting where you need to go on time.
For that reason, you need to be as prepared as you possibly can for just about any eventuality, and packing the following tools and items in your cab before every trip is vital to your success in a life on the road:
1) Duct tape
You know what they say about duct tape: You never know when you're going to need it, according to the American Association of Owner Operators. Just one roll in your cab will help you handle all kinds of issues because it's just such a versatile and effective way to patch up a problem until you can address it with the right tools back at a garage.
2) A light test kit
Working lights are a trucker's lifeline in a lot of ways, not the least of which includes the fact that it helps make their big rigs as easily visible to other drivers as possible, the American Association of Owner Operators warned. Moreover, you can be hit with a citation if you're driving with even a single light out, so it's important to test every bulb every time you hit the road.
3) Bungee cords
In much the same way that duct tape can be used to hold things in place, bungee cords can tackle a similar job with a little more flexibility (no pun intended), the American Association of Owner Operators further added. Keep a few handy to ensure that when you need to bind one thing to another, you can do so as securely as possible.
4) High-powered flashlights
There are seemingly a million uses for flashlights of all shapes and sizes, but as a trucker, you should certainly prioritize the ones that throw off a lot of light with their beam, according to Western Truck Insurance Services. It's probably a good idea to have flashlights of various sizes, as some can be used to help you see while you walk down a dark road, and others can be used to illuminate under your hood while you tinker with an engine problem.
5) A Swiss Army Knife
While you should certainly have a whole toolbox handy, it's a good idea to also carry one tool that can do a lot of jobs, Western Truck Insurance Services said. From screwdriver to bottle opener to knife to file, these little wonders can truly do just about anything and come in handy when you don't have easy access to your usual array of tools.
6) Work gloves
As with anything else in the trucking world, safety needs to come first no matter what you're working on, according to Schneider. A good pair of work gloves will help protect your hands as you work on whatever issues need fixing.
7) Safety goggles
In much the same way as you have to protect your fingers and hands, it's also vital to make sure your eyes are safe from potential hazards, Schneider advised. You should never do any repairs without a good pair of safety goggles or glasses on.
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