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Are you interested in moving intermodal freight and expanding your owner operator business? Download the free DrayNow app from the App Store or Google Play store, or click the button below.

In order to register and use the DrayNow app to find local intermodal loads, carriers will need to have at least one tandem axle tractor unit. When it comes to intermodal trucking, a driver will be hauling 53’ containers that are coming off the rails, so carriers only have to provide the unit and the driver. This is also commonly referred to as power only trucking.

There are two main types of tractor units that carriers can purchase: day cabs and sleeper cabs. Their names give a lot of hints as to what they provide. Sleeper cabs have additional space in the back for the driver to rest if they’re on a long-haul trip that requires a layover. Day cabs are smaller than sleeper cabs and are used for local moves where the driver can get home every night and won’t need to have a layover.

Given that intermodal loads are all local, carriers interested in this freight can have either a day cab or a sleeper cab. Even though intermodal loads are all local and rarely would warrant an overnight trip, carriers like to have sleeper cabs for the space and for the flexibility in being able to run longer mileage non intermodal loads as well.

Due to the size of each unit, there are going to be weight differences that may factor into the work a carrier can pick up. Federal regulations limit the total weight of a truck plus the freight to a maximum of 80,000 pounds. Carriers with a day cab will have an easier time staying under the commercial vehicle weight limit. This also means that day cab carriers are able to potentially haul more weight because this power unit is smaller than a traditional sleeper cab. The lighter the day cab, the more potential opportunities that could come a carrier’s way.

Specific to intermodal trucking, carriers with sleeper cabs will need to watch the weight of the cargo in the drayage container. The recommended weight limit for intermodal containers is 42,500 pounds and depending on the size of the sleeper cab, the carrier may be cutting it close to the 80,000 pound commercial vehicle weight limit. Luckily, most intermodal loads weigh a lot less than 42,500 pounds.

When it comes to running intermodal loads, a carrier cannot go wrong with either a day cab or a sleeper cab, though day cabs can allow for more weight to be hauled. However, going over-the-road and doing more long-haul moves will most likely require a sleeper cab.

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