Truck Sleepers: An Excellent Innovation for Truck Drivers

November 14, 2012

When a "sleeper" compartment is attached to a truck's cabin to help create extra space for the driver to rest or sleep, it is called a Truck Sleeper. The Office of Motor Carriers and the NHTSA have set new limits for truck drivers for the maximum number of hours they can work at a stretch. According to these limits, a driver is allowed to work for up to 11 hours, following 10 consecutive hours off duty.

Due to these safety regulations, many times a driver is in a situation where he or she must find a place to rest when the maximum allotted work hours have been reached. In such a situation, it is more economical and sometimes more comfortable for a driver to sleep in the truck's cabin rather than pay for stay at a motel. This has led to a growing popularity of trucks with extended cabins that provide sleeping space for drivers.

Ideal for Owner Operators

A self-employed driver of a commercial truck is commonly known as an owner operator, who drives his or her own truck over the highways for clients. These owner operators run their businesses at relatively lower costs compared to larger carriers, and it makes more sense for them to make use of truck sleeper cabins. Sometimes an owner operator may have to spend months at a stretch on the roads, which makes it very convenient to have a larger sleeping cabin, or a sleeping cabin at all, in their truck.

Looking into this demand from owner operators, many truck manufacturers began providing sleeping cabins with the trucks. The early truck sleepers did not pay much attention to comfort or luxury, and were limited to 18 to 24 inches in size in width of course. Very soon the sleepers grew in size to 48 inches, keeping the long haul drivers and comfort in consideration. Customized sleeper size in a modern truck may range from 36 inches to as much as 230 inches.

Custom Sleepers

Custom sleepers are usually fitted with a variety of comforts and amenities that are comparable to RVs. Some or all of such comfort features can be included in the sleeper, depending on the needs of an individual owner or operator. Modern custom sleepers typically include a roof made of aluminum, walls with a full 2-inch thick insulation, vents included on both sides, and a range of vinyl interiors to choose from.

Other custom features include interior lighting, exterior clearance lights, wooden cabinets, tool compartment door, escape door, dinette table, pull-out table, bunk bed, 12-volt motorized ceiling vent, gas cylinder, mattress, TV antenna, refrigerator, television, DVD, stereo speakers, microwave oven, bay window, and a pull-out gas grill, among other things.

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