Truckers don't exactly have it easy even when weather conditions are ideal, but the problems can mount quickly when temperatures start to dip and winter precipitation arrives. One of the biggest issues many drivers face in their lives on the road is that cold weather in the Northern U.S. is a constant problem in January and February (and sometimes beyond), so it's important for them to be able to stay as warm as possible.
The following will help you do just that, and remain comfortable even in the most inhospitable conditions:
1) A heated mattress pad
Most truckers really start to feel the cold when they pull over for the night and settle into bed, according to Planet Freight. A great way to avoid shivering overnight is to have a heated blanked or mattress pad that runs on electricity, so you can always be assured your bed will stay at a comfortable temperature.
2) A heavy-duty sleeping bag
If you don't want to rely on power overnight (or an emergency makes it so that you can't), having a sleeping bag rated for extreme low temperatures is the next best thing, Planet Freight said. Such a product will insulate you from even the harshest cold, and usually won't be too expensive.
3) Hand warmers
When you have to get out of your truck, your hands and feet can get quite cold — possibly to dangerous extents — even if you're wearing proper cold-weather gear, Planet Freight further advised. For that reason, stocking up on small hand warmers that you can wear under your gloves, put in your pockets or even tuck into your shoes can go a long way toward keeping you comfortable.
4) A space heater
This works on a similar principle to a heated blanket or mattress pad, but it's ideal for when you're just hanging out in your sleeper berth and don't want to get into bed yet, according to Truck Insure. Best of all, you don't have to run it overnight.
5) Extra blankets
Extra blankets aren't dissimilar from having a highly rated sleeping bag, but they do have additional utility, Truck Insure advised. You can drape a blanket around your shoulders or across your lap anywhere in your cab and get that extra bit of warmth you need.
6) Warm clothes worn in layers
Your body is a natural heating source, but you will usually need a few layers of clothes to truly keep all that warmth in, according to Digital Dispatch. Long sleeves, thick materials and more are advisable at this time of year.
7) Outdoor winter gear
Finally, it's a good idea to make sure you are wearing effective cold-weather clothing when you need to go outside, Digital Dispatch noted. That may mean investing in a heavier-duty jacket, a warm winter cap, gloves, insulated boots and so on, but you need to be able to strike that just-right balance between functional and safe when winter weather is at its worst.
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