Time to learn some CB lingo and talk like a Trucker!
- “Break 1-9 for that westbound bull rack. Come on. How’s it lookin’ over your shoulder? What’d you leave behind you?”
- “There was a plain brown wrapper at the 56 yd stick, a bear in the air, and a wreck @ the 104. The coops were workin’ hard on your side going east.”
- “You’re clean back to the 12 yd stick, where I got on”
If you have no idea what this talk is about then you clearly require some 'talking like a true trucker' instructions. Truck drivers used CB radios, also known as Citizen's Band Radios, to communicate decades ago (before the mobile phone!).
The laws were far stricter back then than they are now of course, and we could surely use some strict regulations on the radio programs today considering the amount of content that serious truckers could do without. Still, knowing the CB lingo is part of being a trucker. It’s all part of the trucker culture. As they say, you gotta talk the talk and walk the walk.
CB codes and trucker talk date back to the 1960s and 1970s, when CB radios were popular. Truckers developed a language of their own, which they used when talking to each other on their CB radios. CB language can be found in some of the classic trucker films, such as Smokey and the Bandit and Convoy.
We can't fathom either film without the trucker culture's flowery vocabulary. The definitions of phrases changed throughout time and differ from place to region, and the initial ten codes are no longer widely used.
The way people listen to the radio has tragically altered as well. Nowadays, just a few professional drivers utilize the CB to converse.Many people believe that the radio as a medium is no longer used in the way that it was intended.
Some drivers say they still use it now and again to keep an eye on traffic and stay informed about any incidents that are clogging the highways. The CB radio has a long and illustrious history in the trucking sector and it’s sad to see how little it's used these days.
If you've ever listened in on some CB slang, you know how fast you can become lost in the discourse. If you're a rookie driver or have friends who drive 18-wheelers with whom you're trying to keep up, here's a list of common trucker slang in real English.
Do you want to be a part of the fun?
CB Lingo Words and Phrases
- 10-4 Roger – Yes
- Back door – behind your truck, somebody who’s behind you, like the police
- Bad ass – very cool
- Bear – cop
- Catch you on the flip flop see you on your return trip
- Chicken coop – weigh station
- Chicken lights – extra lights on a rig or trailer
- Chicken truck – owner operator rig with lots of lights, chrome, and cool accessories
- Clean shot – no cops around
- Comic Book – driver’s log book
- Diesel Bear – D.O.T. cop specializing in truck enforcement
- Driver – a trucker
- Evil Knevil – cop on a motor cycle
- Four wheeler – cars & other vehicles
- Hello, come in – I hear you load and clear
- Just a gettin’ it – running fast and hard
- Large car – big tricked out fancy rig
- Stay loaded – well wishes, make money
- Weight Cop – D.O.T.
- Wipin’ Her Feet – Truck is slipping, sliding
COURTESY AND RESPECT ON THE CB
- Watch the language.There will be a lot of people listening to you, so be mindful. You will also be heard by people in cars. Don't put the truck driver in a negative light. Professional drivers sadly already have a poor public image so d on't addup to the problem.
- Don't make certain information public. Don't reveal what you have on board in terms of freight, value, or destination. This is an old trick to obtain information in order to sabotage the truck, trailer, and load while you're parked, or worse. Take care.
- Scams. On the CB, there are numerous scams. Be wary of anyone requesting assistance or urging you to pull over to the side of the road. What appears to be a cry for assistance may not be what it appears to be.
CB 10 CODES
Some old school truckers still use CB codes, however the majority of the old CB codes have become outdated. Here are some them.
- 10-1 Receiving poorly
- 10-2 Good reception
- 10-4 Message received. All ok.
- 10-5 Relay message
- 10-6 Stand by
- 10-7 Out of service
- 10-9 Repeat message
- 10-11 Talking too fast
- 10-12 Visitors present
- 10-13 Advise on weather and road conditions
- 10-16 Make a pickup at
- 10-23 Stand by
- 10-26 Ignore last message
- 10-27 Moving to your channel
- 10-33 Emergency traffic
- 10-35 Confidential information
- 10-37 Wrecker needed at
- 10-38 Ambulance needed at
- 10-41 Turn to channel (turn to another channel)
- 10-42 Accident at (location of accident)
- 10-43 Traffic jam at (traffic lock up)
- 10-62 Unable to copy, use phone
- 10-65 Awaiting your next message
- 10-70 Fire at ….
- 10-91 Talk closer to the mic
- 10-100 Got to go potty
- 10-200 Police needed at …
So is CB terminology used by all truckers? No, the jargon isn't used by all professional truck drivers. Years ago, it was considerably more common. However, this is no longer the case, as most truck drivers do not utilize a CB radio. CB radios aren't as popular as they once were because there are so many other means for a professional driver to connect with the trucking firm, such as a cell phone and a satellite device. Some truckers still use the radio because it can be utilized in areas where cell phone service is unavailable.
However outdated it may sound it is good to bear in mind that, in the event of an unexpected catastrophe, such as a car collision on the highway, a driver can swiftly inform other vehicles in the area, far faster than they could using a cell phone (If of course the other vehicles have CB radios). It can prevent a vehicle pileup from escalating as a result of an accident.