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Commercial Trailer and Truck Rental Industry Glossary

For logistics professionals, businesses transporting goods, and trucking professionals, understanding the nuances within the commercial trailer and truck rental industry is crucial. This glossary simplifies key terms, providing you with the knowledge needed to make informed decisions, streamline your operations, and optimize your fleet.

Here are some key things to know:

  • Aerodynamic Design: Trailers or trucks with features that reduce air resistance, thus improving fuel efficiency and reducing operational costs. 
  • Box Truck: Also known as a cube truck, cube van, or box van. A chassis cab truck with an enclosed cuboid-shaped cargo area. Box trucks are versatile, navigating city streets with ease, perfect for last-mile deliveries or smaller loads.
  • Cab and Chassis: Consider the cab and chassis as the essential framework upon which various truck bodies are mounted. The cab refers to the part of the truck where the driver and passengers sit, while the chassis consists of the frame, engine, transmission, axles, and wheels that form the base of the vehicle. This versatile combination enables operators to customize the truck for a myriad of applications—be it a flatbed for heavy cargo or a specialized utility body. 
  • CARB Compliance?: CARB compliance refers to the adherence to regulations established by the California Air Resources Board (CARB), an agency tasked with controlling air pollution and improving air quality in California. It encompasses a wide range of regulations aimed at reducing emissions from vehicles, engines, fuels, and other sources of pollution. To ensure they meet the state's environmental requirements, compliance with CARB regulations is essential for individuals, businesses, and industries operating in California and other designated states.
  • Cargo Van: A versatile vehicle with an enclosed cargo area for transport of goods. Its compact size suits urban environments and tight spaces. Streamline your operations and enhance final-mile delivery with the reliability of a cargo van.
  • Cart Stops: Devices installed on lift gates to prevent carts or other rolling equipment from slipping off during transit. Cart stops—simple yet critical for securing your rolling cargo.
  • CDL (Commercial Driver's License): An essential license that a driver must obtain to operate commercial motor vehicles (CMVs), including tractor-trailers, passenger buses, and cargo vehicles within the United States. A CDL ensures that drivers meet the stringent requirements for operating large, heavy, or hazardous-materials vehicles.
  • Chassis Trailer: The base frame of a modular trailer, commonly used for transporting ocean containers over short distances. Chassis trailers are indispensable for intermodal transport, bridging the gap between sea and land.
  • Cube Truck: Similar to box trucks, a cube truck has a cube-shaped cargo area for secure and spacious transport of goods. 
  • Curtainside Trailer/Truck: A type of truck or trailer with a retractable tarp-like curtain on the sides, allowing for quick and easy loading and unloading without needing doors.
  • Double Bunk in a Sleeper Cab: A sleeper cab equipped with two sleeping bunks, allowing multiple drivers to rest and take turns driving long distances without stopping for lodging.
  • Drop Axle/Tri Axle: An additional axle that can be lowered or raised depending on the weight of the load, allowing for more weight to be carried and improving stability.
  • Dry Van Trailer: Enclosed trailers are designed to protect shipments from external elements. Commonly used for transporting non-perishable goods. Dry vans are the backbone of over-the-road shipping, offering versatility for a wide range of freight. Certain dry van trailers are also available as a storage solution. 
  • Electric Standby: An external power source that maintains refrigeration units' operation when the engine is off, conserving fuel and reducing emissions. 
  • E-Track System: A series of rails mounted along the interior of a trailer, featuring multiple anchoring points for adjustable cargo securing. With an E-Track system, flexibility meets security in cargo management. 
  • Flatbed Trailer: A type of trailer with no sides or roof, ideal for loading and unloading goods from the top, side, or rear. Used for oversized freight or equipment that doesn’t fit within standard enclosed trailers. Flatbed trailers are the answer when dimensions become a challenge.
  • Flatbed Truck: Similar to flatbed trailers, but the flatbed is attached to the truck itself. Offering flexibility for quick loading and unloading of goods. 
  • Flatbed Truck Bulkhead: A robust vertical barrier at the front of a flatbed truck designed to protect the cab and driver from shifting loads. The flatbed truck bulkhead is your front-line defense for driver safety.
  • Flex Space: Flex space refers to the strategic use of dry van trailers as a versatile and mobile warehousing solution. By repurposing these trailers for storage purposes, companies can enjoy the benefits of flexibility, cost-efficiency, and enhanced operational capabilities. This approach particularly suits businesses with fluctuating inventory needs, project-specific storage requirements, or limited access to permanent warehousing facilities.
  • Glad Hands: Coupling devices for connecting the brake lines from a truck or tractor to a trailer. Glad hands are the unsung heroes that ensure safety and reliability.
  • Group A CDL: This license allows operators to drive combinations of vehicles with a Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, provided the towed vehicle is over 10,000 pounds. Group A encompasses vehicles like tractor-trailers and tankers.
  • Group B CDL: Designed for drivers who operate a single vehicle with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, or a vehicle towing another vehicle not exceeding 10,000 pounds. It is typically required for straight trucks, buses, box trucks, and dump trucks. 
  • Group C CDL: For drivers required to transport hazardous materials or drive a vehicle designed to carry 16 or more occupants (including the driver), a Group C CDL is necessary, regardless of the vehicle's weight.
  • GVW (Gross Vehicle Weight): The total weight of a single vehicle and its contents, including its bodywork, fuel, cargo, driver, and passengers. The GVW is a critical measurement for compliance with road safety regulations, ensuring that vehicles are within safe operating limits to prevent undue stress on roadways and infrastructure. Recognizing GVW is not just compliance, it's about responsibility on the roads.
  • ICC Bumper: A sturdy bumper is required by the Interstate Commerce Commission to prevent under-ride during a collision, enhancing safety. ICC bumpers: maintaining the highest safety standards is a top priority.
  • Insulated Interiors: A thermal lining within a vehicle's cargo area that maintains a consistent temperature, protecting sensitive goods. Insulated interiors are your silent guardians against temperature fluctuations.
  • Kingpin Coupling: A kingpin is a critical component of the coupling system, a sturdy pin that locks into the 5th wheel coupling on a tractor. This connection is paramount for the safety and stability of heavy-duty hauling. 
  • Live Loading: Live loading refers to the logistics practice where cargo is loaded onto a truck while the driver waits. This method demands precise scheduling and efficiency to minimize idle time, ensuring the maximum use of the driver's time and vehicle. Efficient use of live loading can be the difference between on-time delivery and costly delays.
  • Load Out: The process of loading freight onto a trailer before transportation. Efficient load outs are critical for saving on costs, optimizing space, securing cargo, and ensuring safe transit when moving vehicles to other locations. 
  • Logistics Posts: Reinforced vertical beams within a trailer that allows for adjustable shelving and cargo restraint. Logistics posts are the backbone for adaptable space management—you need these for versatility in cargo hauling.
  • Moffett: A type of forklift that is mounted to the rear of a truck or trailer for on-site unloading, increasing efficiency and reducing dependency on delivery-site equipment. 
  • Rail Gate: A liftgate with side rails for increased stability during lifting, ensuring a secure loading and unloading process. Rail gates are essential for heavy-duty lifting.
  • Reefer Trailer: Refrigerated trailers transport perishable goods that require temperature control. Vital for the food and pharmaceutical industries, reefer trailers maintain quality and compliance over long distances. Certain reefer trailers are also available as a storage solution.
  • Reefer Trailer Detailed: A double mention but worth the emphasis - Reefer Trailers are specialized refrigerated trailers crucial for temperature-sensitive cargoes. 
  • Refrigerated Box Truck: A smaller, more nimble version of the reefer trailer. Perfect for urban deliveries where a larger trailer won’t fit. Reefer box trucks keep the cold chain unbroken, from warehouse to doorstep. 
  • Refrigerated Cargo Van: A cargo van equipped with refrigeration, ensuring smaller quantities of perishable goods stay cool during transit. 
  • Roll Door: A door that rolls up to open, providing quick and efficient access to the truck's cargo space with minimal clearance. Typically, roll doors are ideal for fast-paced deliveries.
  • Semi Trailer: A semi trailer is a type of trailer commonly used to haul freight. It is characterized by having wheels at the rear end only, with the front end supported by a tractor unit or a detachable front axle assembly called a dolly. This design allows for easy maneuverability and flexibility in connecting and disconnecting trailers from the towing vehicle. Semi-trailers are widely used in commercial transportation to carry goods over long distances on highways and roads. They come in various sizes and configurations to accommodate different types of cargo and transportation needs.
  • Single Axle Daycab: A truck featuring a single rear axle and no sleeper berth, ideal for local or short-haul deliveries. Single axle day cabs offer maneuverability and cost-efficiency, making them a smart choice for urban logistics. 
  • Single Axle Sleeper: This configuration includes one rear axle and an attached sleeping compartment for driver rest during long hauls. Efficiency meets comfort, ensuring drivers are refreshed and ready for the journey ahead.
  • Single Bunk in a Sleeper Cab: A sleeper cab that only has one sleeping bunk, typically used by a single driver for long-distance trips.
  • Spread Axle: A type of axle configuration where the axles are spaced further apart than a standard tandem axle, providing greater weight distribution and stability for heavy loads.
  • Stake Body: A type of flatbed truck with upright steel stakes around its perimeter, used for hauling bulk materials or oversized loads that need to be secured.
  • Storage Trailers: Storage trailers, including dry van and reefer trailers, are often used for temporary or long-term storage needs, offering flexibility and convenience for businesses and construction sites requiring additional storage space due to excess inventory.
  • Straight Truck Detailed: A single-frame vehicle where the cargo box and cab are part of the same structure. Known for its stability and ease of driving, a straight truck streamlines the delivery process.
  • Swing Door: Hinged doors at the rear of a trailer that open outward, allowing for full access to the cargo space. 
  • Tandem Axle: A type of axle configuration where two axles are placed close together on a vehicle, commonly used in trucks and trailers to distribute weight more evenly and improve maneuverability.
  • Tandem Axle Daycab: A sturdy option with two rear axles capable of handling heavier loads without a sleeper unit, perfect for regional deliveries. The tandem axle day cab is the powerhouse.
  • Tandem Axle Sleeper: With two rear axles and a sleeper berth, this truck is designed for longer, heavier hauls and driver accommodation.
  • Tow Away: A service where trailers are towed away from one location to another, often used for relocating empty trailers. Tow aways provide additional options to move specialized vehicles efficiently. 
  • Truck Under Liftgate: A platform at the rear of a truck that can be lowered to ground level for ease of loading and unloading heavy items.
  • Wet Kit: A hydraulic kit that powers auxiliary equipment on a truck, such as cranes or dump bodies, using the truck's engine and transmission system.
  • Wood Slats: Vertical or horizontal wooden supports integrated within the interior walls of a truck or trailer. Wood slats protect cargo from damage and provide secure points for tie-downs.
  • 5th Wheel Coupling: A circular steel device that connects a tractor to a trailer, pivotal for articulating movement between the two. The 5th wheel coupling ensures a secure and versatile connection, allowing for efficient turning and maneuverability. 

COOP by Ryder offers a full range of commercial trailers and vehicles with various configurations, including those mentioned above, to meet the unique needs of different businesses. With the COOP platform, you can easily browse and rent the right equipment. Request a quote now and experience the convenience and flexibility that COOP brings to maximize fleet use efficiently.

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