What Is a Header Board on a Truck?

Header boards are an essential safety feature on trucks, preventing cargo from falling off during transit. Typically made of metal or plastic, they are installed at the front of the truck bed.


Front-end Header Board: Role in Safety

A front-end header board, commonly known as a headache rack, is designed to protect truck drivers from the cargo in the event of an accident or emergency stop. It is installed between the cab and the cargo area, consisting of a metal frame with a mesh or solid panel covering the opening.

The Purpose of Header Boards

Header boards are intended to prevent cargo from shifting forward and hitting the cab during an accident, thus avoiding severe injuries to the driver and passengers. Moreover, they also protect the cargo from theft and weather damage.

Tractor Trailer Headers: Function in Exhaust System

The header is one of the critical parts of a tractor-trailer as it enables the exhaust system’s efficient functioning. The exhaust header eliminates the manifold’s back pressure by allowing each cylinder to have its own exhaust pipe. These pipes converge in a collector pipe, and the exhaust gases flow through the system and out the tailpipe. This leads to increased power and improved fuel economy.

Bulkhead: Safety Feature in Commercial Vans and Flatbed Trucks

The bulkhead is a wall-like structure that keeps drivers and passengers safe during a crash or sudden stop. It also prevents cargo from moving around or falling off during an accident. Commercial vans are usually made from steel or wire and can be removable or fixed in place. Similarly, flatbed trucks are affixed to the front end of the trailer, stabilizing the load and preventing shifting during transit.

How Truck Drivers Can Ensure Safety on the Road

To ensure safety on the road, truck drivers should follow simple tips that can help avoid accidents.

Inspect the Truck Before Driving

Before hitting the road, truck drivers should always inspect their trucks. This includes checking the tires, brakes, and lights to ensure they are in good working order. By doing so, truck drivers can identify any issues that could cause problems while driving.

Drive Carefully in Bad Weather

Truck drivers should avoid driving in bad weather whenever possible. Suppose driving in rain, snow, or ice conditions is unavoidable. In that case, drivers should take extra care to move slowly and avoid sudden stops. These measures can help ensure the truck stays controlled and avoid accidents.

Be Mindful of Blind Spots

Truck drivers should also be aware of their blind spots and avoid driving in other vehicles’ blind spots whenever possible. Blind spots can make it difficult for truck drivers to see other vehicles, which could lead to collisions.

Wear Seatbelts While Driving

Wearing seatbelts is crucial for any driver, and truck drivers are no exception. By wearing seatbelts, drivers can reduce the risk of injury in the event of an accident.

Understanding Gooseneck Hitches

A gooseneck hitch is a trailer hitch designed with trailers with a gooseneck coupler. Gooseneck hitches are known for providing higher towing stability than other types of hitches, making them ideal for use with trailers carrying heavy loads. They are also used with fifth-wheel trailers and can provide higher towing stability for these types of trailers.

What Is a Trailer Hitch?

A trailer hitch is a device used to attach a trailer to a vehicle. It comes in various sizes and styles, so choosing the right hitch for your specific vehicle and trailer is essential. Most hitches are designed for use with trailers that have a standard coupler. However, hitches are also available for use with fifth-wheel trailers and gooseneck trailers. It is always best to consult a salesperson or trailer dealer to determine which type of hitch is appropriate for your needs.

Correct Installation of the Trailer Hitch

Once the appropriate hitch has been chosen, it is essential to install it correctly. Incorrectly installed hitches can result in serious accidents, so it is best to have a professional install your hitch.


Truck drivers can ensure safety on the road by following simple tips such as inspecting the truck before driving, driving carefully in bad weather, being mindful of blind spots, and wearing seatbelts. Choosing the appropriate hitch and correctly installing it is also essential to avoid accidents. Bulkheads play a critical role in ensuring the safety of both driver and cargo, protecting against the forward movement, and preventing load shifts during transit.

About the author, Laurence Perkins

Laurence Perkins is the passionate car enthusiast behind the blog My Auto Machine. With over a decade of experience in the automotive industry, Perkins has knowledge and experience with a wide range of car makes and models. His particular interests lie in performance and modification, and his blog covers these topics in-depth. In addition to his own blog, Perkins is a respected voice in the automotive community and writes for various automotive publications. His insights and opinions on cars are highly sought-after.