What is A Dry Van?

In trucking, a “dry van” refers to a type of enclosed trailer that is commonly used to transport various types of cargo over long distances. Here are the key characteristics and features of dry vans:


  1. Enclosed Structure: Dry vans are fully enclosed trailers, meaning they have walls, a roof, and a floor, providing protection from the elements and securing the cargo inside.
  2. Standard Dimensions: Dry vans typically come in standard dimensions, with lengths ranging from around 28 feet to 53 feet. The width is usually around 8 feet, and the height varies but is generally around 8.5 to 9.5 feet.
  3. Versatility: Dry vans are versatile and can accommodate a wide range of cargo types, including palletized goods, boxed items, appliances, electronics, furniture, and more. They are commonly used for transporting non-perishable goods that do not require refrigeration or specialized handling.
  4. Loading and Unloading: Dry vans are equipped with rear doors that swing open or roll up, providing easy access for loading and unloading cargo. Some dry vans may also have side doors for additional access options.
  5. Security: Dry vans are designed to securely contain and protect the cargo during transit. They often feature locking mechanisms on the doors to prevent unauthorized access and theft.
  6. Weather Protection: The enclosed structure of dry vans provides protection from weather conditions such as rain, snow, wind, and sunlight, helping to keep the cargo dry and in good condition during transportation.
  7. Weight Capacity: Dry vans have weight limits specified by regulations, including maximum gross vehicle weight (GVW) and axle weight limits. It’s essential for trucking companies to adhere to these weight restrictions to ensure safe and legal transportation.
  8. Common Usage: Dry vans are among the most common types of trailers used in the trucking industry for long-haul freight transportation. They are frequently seen on highways and interstates, transporting goods between distribution centers, warehouses, retail stores, and other destinations.


Overall, dry vans are an integral part of the logistics and transportation industry, providing a reliable and efficient means of transporting a wide variety of goods across long distances while offering protection from the elements and ensuring the security of the cargo.