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Chicomm Blog

Keep On Truckin': Common CB Radio Lingo

Posted by Lisa MacGillivray on Thursday, September 7, 2017

Each culture of two-way radio users has its own radio lingo: Public safety and the military have ten codes and the phonetic alphabet, and CB Radio Lingotruck drivers have perhaps the most colorful sub-language with CB radio lingo.

Popularized by TV shows and movies of the 1970s and 1980s – “Smokey and the Bandit,” anyone?– ­CB radio lingo is still used by truckers today and continues to evolve. 

Here are some of the most common rated PG examples of CB radio lingo (remember that we said it was colorful).

Law Enforcement

Advertising: a marked police car with its lights flashing

Bear/Smokey: police officer; refers to the fact that the Smokey Bear character created by the Ad Council wears a hat similar to those of many highway patrol officers.

Camera: police radar unit

City Kitty: local police officer

County Mounty: county sheriff or deputy

Evel Knievel: police officer on a motorcycle; named for the motorcycle stuntman.


Big D: Dallas

Derby City: Louisville, Kentucky

Mardi Gras: New Orleans

Mickey Mouse: Orlando, Florida

Windy City: Chicago

Life on the Road

Alligator/Gator: large piece of blown-out tire on the road

Go-go Juice: gasoline or diesel fuel

Nap Trap: hotel or rest stop 


Bulldog: Mack road tractor

Four-wheeler: any vehicle with only 2 axles; anything that isn’t an eighteen wheeler/semi truck

Kiddie car: School bus

Pete/Peter Car: Peterbilt truck

Salt Shaker: snow plow

10 Codes & More

Truckers also have their own versions of 10 codes, some of which have the same meanings as law enforcement and others all their own. “10-4,” for example, tends to universally mean “I understand.”

As with any new language, if you’re new to the two-way radio world, you’ll want to listen for a while to understand nuances and context before you jump into the conversation. That goes for CB radio lingo, too, for anyone ready to hit the open road.

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Radio Lingo Reference Guide