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Kevin H.'s Comment
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OK, one thing that wears on me about this job is noise when I'm trying to sleep. Yeah, I know, earplugs, but I don't want to block everything out and be oblivious to something important happening. I just want to have an occasional night when I don't feel like I live in the boiler room of a large building.

Anyway, I stay at company drop yards a lot, but even those are going down hill. One in Maine was really dead quiet at night, but now there always seem to be a few reefers around (sorry reefer people, but it's annoying). We have a yard in Mass. that had a large dirt lot where you could always find a quiet corner (although a couple times I had to move after shutting down), but now they're building on the lot and parking is scarce.

Anyway, one thing I try to do when I can to cut down on noise is pull in to a truck stop space forward instead of backing. This works great except (as I remember posting a while back) when someone comes in late and parks in the space you need to back out. But there's one truck stop I go to occasionally that has a large square area in the middle of the parking, so it's easy to back out and people do pull in forward sometimes. But the last time I did that I woke up to someone talking, and when i looked out I saw that someone had pulled in head first next to me and was talking on the phone loudly. And I'm at that same truck stop now, and I pulled in head first next to someone who backed in, but someone just pulled in head first on the other side. Grrrrr.....I guess seeing someone pulled in head first makes the next person to come along not feel like such a dumbass for doing it (my trainer once pointed at someone who had pulled in head first at a truck stop and said "there's a dumbass").

Anyway, anyone else have this problem, or any solutions?


A refrigerated trailer.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Bud A.'s Comment
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Noise doesn't usually bother me, at least the kind of steady noise generated by running diesel engines. (I can't sleep with a tv or radio on, though, but that's only a problem when I'm home.)

One thing that has helped me a lot is melatonin. You can get them in the vitamin area of many stores, including Walmart. One 3mg or 5mg tablet right before bed will generally get me right to sleep. It's a natural hormone that your body produces by itself, so there are no ill effects. There has been at least one study I've read that showed long-term usage isn't harmful as well.

I've been taking it four or five times a week for over five years without ill effects. Sometimes I forget it when I go home and my wife has the tv on, but I still get to sleep eventually. Without the tv, I sleep normally too, even without the melatonin.

I don't always take it on the road, but it really helps when my sleep schedule gets crazy.

The only caution I have is, don't take it unless you know you can sleep for at least six or seven hours, or you'll wake up and be groggy for quite a while. I never use it for a midday nap while waiting for something to happen, only when I'm shut down for the day.

Truckin Along With Kearse's Comment
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Did you ever try sleeping with music or the TV on? It would drown out the "foreign" noise and surround you with familia and comforting sounds.

Kevin H.'s Comment
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Maybe I'll try melatonin. And the drowning out is an idea. Right now I only have ear buds and my computer (and I can't wear them while lying down), but I guess I could try leaving the radio on.

Now the trailer I pulled in next to has gone and the next truck over has pulled in head first and has an apu. *sigh*...but to be fair, I think he was there before me.


Auxiliary Power Unit

On tractor trailers, and APU is a small diesel engine that powers a heat and air conditioning unit while charging the truck's main batteries at the same time. This allows the driver to remain comfortable in the cab and have access to electric power without running the main truck engine.

Having an APU helps save money in fuel costs and saves wear and tear on the main engine, though they tend to be expensive to install and maintain. Therefore only a very small percentage of the trucks on the road today come equipped with an APU.

Deb R.'s Comment
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Good to know I am not the only trucker bothered by all the noise! In general, I have found that rest areas are quieter than truck stops, but not always. My favorite thing is delivering to a small customer where I have the place to myself, can put screens in the windows, open up the vents in the sleeper, and sleep in peace with a cool breeze. Of course, that is the exception rather than the rule. I got a small metal 12 volt fan at a truck stop that I attached to a short 1 x 6. I set it on the floor and run at night as kind of a while noise machine in addition to aiding circulation. It helps a lot, and the dog likes to lay in front of it too.

Deb R.'s Comment
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*white* noise machine, that is.

Big Scott's Comment
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My wife has a lot of trouble sleeping. She uses fans a white noise, melatonin, and goes to sleep with ear buds in while listening to guided meditations on YouTube. I also think she has some that she downloaded. She uses her phone for this. I on the other hand can sleep through just about anything.

dirtrocker's Comment
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I actually like the sound. It helps me to sleep. If it's dead silent at night I'll toss and turn all night and not sleep very well. Even at home I have to turn on some kind of fan for the constant steady noise

Noah 's Comment
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I have to have a fan on period lol If I don't have a fan blowing on me I'll watch the sun come up lol


Operating While Intoxicated

Pianoman's Comment
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Usually the noise doesn't bother me, but then again I'm usually of the loud ones haha. Yep, I'm a reefer guy. This trailer I have right now is driving me nuts though--it vibrates at just the right frequency to make it super loud in the truck.


A refrigerated trailer.

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