The DOT just confirmed that the nation has a truck parking problem. Wow, who knew!
I hope you noted the sarcasm there. DOT and FMCSA limit the driving time of truck drivers but the regulations do not take in to account the logistic nightmares drivers encounter.
As a driver, you plan your trip as carefully as you can, taking in to account what big city traffic delays at what times, the delivery time for your load, the hours to drive you have available, the fuel stops on your route. Then all it takes is a very common delay at the shipper. The load the driver was scheduled to pick up at 10AM won’t be ready until 2PM. So all that planning goes out the window. Already behind before even starting, the driver begins to think of where he will be when his driving time is up and he needs to park and sleep. There are stretches of this country where there are NO places to stop and park. Or parking is restricted. Or its full. Or its closed for repairs. Or its closed because that state ran out of money for maintenance. Or its a truckstop that charges you to park. Or its such a dangerous spot you can’t sleep if you do find a parking place.
The survey was done in response to Jason’s Law. Jason’s Law, named after truck driver, husband and father, Jason Rivenburg. He arrived at his delivery location early, he was not allowed to park there so he drove to an abandoned gas station to take a nap. While there he was robbed of $7.00 and murdered. Read the story of the killers conviction here.
Its frustrating that 6 years after the murder, we are still talking about the parking problem. Read the article published in Trucking News here . This is a problem in every one of the 48 contiguous states.
The Department of Transportation and the National Coalition on Truck Parking are chating about the issue. We know its a problem, a big problem. Isn’t it time to stop talking, DOT, and start doing.
Trucking News also has a great article. Click here to read.