National Coalition to Address Truck Parking Shortages

September 01, 2015 by Seth Sparks, @sethbsparks

The National Coalition on Truck Parking has been formed to address parking shortages for commercial trucks, as 37 state Departments of Transportation have reported problems with overcrowding of designated parking locations.

These results come from a truck parking survey, which was conducted by order of Jason’s Law, a 2012 ruling named after Jason Rivenburg, who in 2009 was killed while parked in an abandoned gas station due to a lack of adequate parking locations.

The results of the survey highlight the depth of parking problems in both official and unofficial parking locations in the United States. Thirty states report shortages in public rest areas, while 16 states report similar shortages in private truckstops and designated pullouts and vistas. Twenty-four states have reported parking problems along freeway interchange ramps.

A large majority of truck drivers have encountered shortages on a regular basis. Seventy-five percent of surveyed drivers said that they have experienced difficulty finding a safe parking location when in need of rest, with 90 percent reporting similar problems during nighttime hours. These shortages were at their worst during weekdays.

The locations that play host to most shortages are heavily trafficked corridors: I-95, I-40, I-80, I-10, and I-81. States with the most severe shortages were New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York, Virginia, Maryland, South Carolina, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, California, Washington, and Oregon.

The good news is that $18 billion dollars will be allocated to address the problems, with some of the funds going towards building and expanding current parking locations, and others to provide resources to truckers to find a safe place to park and rest.

In the wake of the report, the USDOT and the National Coalition on Truck Parking will begin communication with both local and state governments, as well as the trucking community, regarding solutions to meet the needs of truckers.

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