The American Trucking Associations praised the introduction of bipartisan legislation addressing the trucking industry’s critical need for greater access to safe commercial parking.
The Truck Parking Safety Improvement Act, introduced by Representatives Mike Bost (R-Illinois), Angie Craig (D-Minnesota), John Garamendi (D-California), Susan Wild (D-Pennsylvania), Dusty Johnson (R-South Dakota) and Pete Stauber (R-Minnesota), would set aside $755 million from the Highway Trust Fund for states to finance projects aimed at increasing the number of parking spaces for commercial truck drivers.
“The severe shortage of safe parking presents truckers with an untenable dilemma: either keep driving when they are fatigued and possibly in violation of their federal hours-of-service requirement—or park in unsafe, sometimes illegal locations, such as a roadside shoulder,” said ATA President and CEO Chris Spear.
Currently, there are more than 11 truck drivers for every one parking space. Studies show that 98% of drivers report problems finding safe truck parking, and the average driver spends 56 minutes of available drive time every day looking for parking. That wasted time amounts to a $5,500 loss in annual compensation – or a 12% annual pay cut. Moreover, 58% of all drivers admit to parking in unauthorized or undesignated spots at least three times per week to meet their parking needs.
“The health and wellbeing of our drivers, the safety of the motoring public and the sustainability of our supply chain all depend on Congress addressing this issue with adequate funding in a surface transportation bill,” said Spear. “Fortunately, Representatives Bost, Craig, Garamendi, Wild, Johnson and Stauber have answered that call, and we thank them for their unwavering leadership on this critical issue.”