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CB Codes: Learn CB Codes Like A Trucker

Truck Driver Academy / Blog  / CB Codes: Learn CB Codes Like A Trucker

CB Codes: Learn CB Codes Like A Trucker

The citizen band (CB) radio service originated in the 1940s, but it wasn’t until the 1970s that it really started to gain popularity amongst truckers. CB radio was a great way for truckers to communicate with each other before other technology existed (i.e. the cellphone). And with CB radio came a whole new language – trucker lingo.

Whether you call it CB talk, CB codes, CB lingo, or just trucker slang, it all amounts to the same thing. It’s the unique way that truckers communicate with each other that is nearly impossible to understand unless you’re well-versed in trucker lingo

While advances in technology have made the CB radio less of a necessity, it’s still important to understand CB codes before you head out on the road. If you’re in the process of getting your CDL or thinking about getting started, then read on to find out some of the main CB lingo that you need to know.

Useful CB Codes

While we can’t provide the entire dictionary of CB codes, there are a couple useful ones we want to call out that you should keep in mind. If you are interested in learning more CB lingo, check out this more comprehensive list of CB slang.

  • Ace – Important CB operator
  • Alligator – Chunk of blown tire on the road
  • Ancient Mariner – AM or FM user
  • Backdoor – Vehicle behind
  • Bear – Cop
  • Black Eye – Headlight out
  • Boat Anchor – An old tube rig or a radio that’s unrepairable
  • Chicken Coop – Weigh station
  • Double Key – Two stations talking at the same time
  • Four Wheeler – Any passenger vehicle
  • Fox Charlie Charlie – FCC
  • Gallon – 1000 watts of power
  • Greasy – Icy or slippery
  • Haircut Palace – Overpass with low clearance
  • Lollipop – The small reflector or marker poles on the sides of the highway
  • Mud Duck – Weak radio signal
  • Pay the Water Bill – Bathroom break
  • Play Dead – Standby
  • Prescription – FCC rules
  • QRM – Noise or interference on the radio
  • Smile and Comb Your Hair – Radar trap ahead, slow down

CB 10 Codes

In addition to the trucker slang listed above, there are also CB 10 codes that truckers use. You’ve likely heard 10-4 being used in everyday life, but the rest of the codes are used much less frequently.

  • 10-1 – I can’t hear you
  • 10-2 – I can hear you
  • 10-3 – Stop transmitting
  • 10-4 – Message received
  • 10-6 – Busy/on hold
  • 10-9 – Repeat message
  • 10-10 – Done transmitting
  • 10-13 – Weather/road conditions
  • 10-17 – Urgent business
  • 10-20 – Your current location
  • 10-23 – Stand by
  • 10-27 – I’m moving to channel [insert channel number]
  • 10-33 – Emergency traffic at this station
  • 10-38 – Ambulance needed at [insert location]
  • 10-42 – Traffic accident at [insert location]
  • 10-45 – All units within range please report
  • 10-62 – Unable to copy, please use phone
  • 10-99 – Mission completed
  • 10-100 – Bathroom break
  • 10-200 – Police needed at [insert location]

Now that you’ve got a handle on the trucker lingo, you can join in on the CB talk while you’re on the road. If you’re interested in learning more and you’re ready to start your trucking career, check out our truck driving school to get started!