Drinking In The Truck.

Topic 1692 | Page 1

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Daniel H.'s Comment
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I went down to the local truck stop to talk to a couple of drivers. After talking to one driver for about 15 min. he said that he just started on a 34 hour reset and he was going to watch a couple movies and have a few beers. Now I can understand wanting to kick back and relax and have a couple of drinks without having to pay five dollars or so per beer in a bar, but it doesn't seem to me like it would be a good idea to have any alcohol whatsoever inside of the truck. I guess my question is is this a commonly accepted thing or a there laws against it? The guy that I was talking to, Tom, is an owner operator so I suppose that his rules apply for his truck. I would suppose that most companies have rules against any such thing for company drivers but I don't know. Personally, I enjoy having a couple ****tails every now and then but, I could just imagine if you spilled a drink then you're just asking for trouble any time that either a company official or DOT officer might stick their head in and even catch the slightest whiff of alcohol. So is it just me or was this guy asking for trouble?

Owner Operator:

An owner-operator is a driver who either owns or leases the truck they are driving. A self-employed driver.


Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

James925's Comment
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You would be surprised what truck drivers do in their truck. I've seen guys go back to the truck with 18 packs in hand, and I'm sure they polished them off very quickly. I don't mind a drink every now and then, but I just figured it wasn't a good idea to tempt fate when I was in the truck to have a drink. And there is plenty of downtime for you to get your drink on, if you really wanted to. When I was at Central, they didn't want you to drink while you were in the truck whatsoever. But some guys play by their own rules out here, as you'll find out.

RedGator (Nalee)'s Comment
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You can get an owi for drinking outside your truck and coming back to it to sleep. Everyone followers their own however your life, your career.


Operating While Intoxicated

Daniel H.'s Comment
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You can get an owi for drinking outside your truck and coming back to it to sleep. Everyone followers their own however your life, your career.

So if I wasn't going to drive for the next 30 hours or so I could get popped for an OWI just because I had a couple of ****tails with dinner and went back to my truck to sleep? Well that makes the question simple, when out on the road if I decide I want to have a few ****tail with dinner At night I will make sure I have the motel room and not climb back into the truck.

Okay, so that makes me think of another question. If you don't want to sleep in your truck, would truck stops have a problem with you pitching a tent on your flat bed or on a grassy area close to truck?


Operating While Intoxicated

Daniel B.'s Comment
member avatar

Most companies policy forbids having any alcohol in the truck. It doesn't matter if you're taking a reset, there's really no excuses. The only time you can drink is on approved hometime.

You can expect to lose your job if you have alcohol in your truck, it doesn't matter if you haven't opened it.

Another thing to watch out for is that companies do random drug/alcohol tests. Anyone who drinks in their truck will eventually get caught.

Daniel H.'s Comment
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Thanks Daniel, that's what I thought. I just had a hard time understanding why Tom would be willing to risk his livelihood for just a few beers.

Dave D. (Armyman)'s Comment
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My understanding is, according to FMCSA , that nonladen alcohol (laden would be the load one is hauling), is forbidden.

392.5(3) (Of FMSCA) Be on duty or operate a commercial motor vehicle while the driver possesses wine of not less than one-half of one centum of alcohol by volume...

Basically a sealed beer can in the rig refrigerator would be forbidden. If D.O.T decides to inspect the cab and sees a beer in the frig, and you were driving...YOUR DONE.


Commercial Motor Vehicle:

A commercial motor vehicle is any vehicle used in commerce to transport passengers or property with either:

  • A gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more
  • A gross combination weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more which includes a towed unit with a gross vehicle weight rating of more than 10,000 pounds
  • CSA:

    Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)

    The CSA is a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) initiative to improve large truck and bus safety and ultimately reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities that are related to commercial motor vehicle


    Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

    The FMCSA was established within the Department of Transportation on January 1, 2000. Their primary mission is to prevent commercial motor vehicle-related fatalities and injuries.

    What Does The FMCSA Do?

    • Commercial Drivers' Licenses
    • Data and Analysis
    • Regulatory Compliance and Enforcement
    • Research and Technology
    • Safety Assistance
    • Support and Information Sharing


    Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

    The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
Daniel H.'s Comment
member avatar

So it's as simple as this, if it ain't on shipping papers, it ain't in the truck.

Dave D. (Armyman)'s Comment
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So it's as simple as this, if it ain't on shipping papers, it ain't in the truck.

As far as alcohol goes, yes.


Tracey K.'s Comment
member avatar

Very good Dave D. You said what needed to be said.

You have Federal laws and you have State laws. One way or another their should be No Booze in the truck. A professional is going to enjoy his recreation on his own home time, with respect to his hours.

I was and I do not say WAS lightly, an alcoholic for 40 years. I am glad that I never drank inside a truck, but I did drive my personal vehicle, costing me two DUI's. Trying to get back into the business now is hard for me. But, I am determined and have learned from my ignorant behavior. I have no problem either with any one who wishes to drink, but do it responsibly and with self control.

Tom is lost and cares nothing about his life or career. I know those are harsh words, but they are the truth. I can only pray that he doesn't hurt anyone else, but himself. And I really don't want him to hurt himself either.

I don't know of any company as Daniel is saying that will allow alcohol in your truck period. Even if it is sitting in your driveway at home. This is a career we are talking about and a life, which you choose to be a part of. Don't blow it.

For those who are drinking in your truck, even as you are reading this post. Get rid of it. Get some sleep, lots of it. And rethink what you are doing. If I have to beg I will!

I better stop. This is a serious topic.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.


Driving Under the Influence


When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

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