Trucking groups ask US Secretary of Transportation for more places to park nationwide

Trucks are seen lined up at the rest stop on I-95 north before the Route 32 exit in Maryland.

Trucks are seen lined up at the rest stop on I-95 north before the Route 32 exit in Maryland.

Trucks are seen lined up at the rest stop on I-95 north before the Route 32 exit in Maryland.

Trucks are seen lined up at the rest stop on I-95 north before the Route 32 exit in Maryland.

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Trucking groups say parking is becoming a problem. An organization based in Arlington, Virginia, is asking for federal funds to help.

At the rest stop on Interstate 95 north before the Route 32 exit in Maryland, trucks lined up Sunday along the ramp and the parking lot was full of truckers taking a rest.

The American Trucking Associations and the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association have sent a letter to U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg asking for a solution.

The groups want the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act funds be prioritized to boost truck parking capacity nationwide.

More than 98% of drivers report problems finding safe parking, burning more than an hour of drive-time each day, which results in a 12% pay cut on average each year, according to the letter.

“Not only does this add severe strain to the supply chain, but it also presents a growing safety hazard for the entire motoring public,” said ATA president and CEO Chris Spear. “Given the historic levels of funding provided by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill, we ask that DOT prioritize this urgent need for America’s truckers.”

The letter said a lack of available truck parking has “dire safety implications for truck drivers as well as the motoring public.”

The letter went on to say the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration hours-of-service regulations require drivers to take a 30-minute break when they have driven for a period of eight cumulative hours without at least a 30-minute interruption, and a 10-hour break after 14 hours of driving.

“When drivers are unable to find safe, authorized parking, they are stuck in a no-win situation, forced to either park in unsafe or illegal locations, or violate federal HOS regulations by continuing to search for safer, legal alternatives,” the letter said. “The bottom line is that safety is compromised when truck parking is not readily available.”

Valerie Bonk

Valerie Bonk started working at WTOP in 2016 and has lived in Howard County, Maryland, her entire life. She's thrilled to be a reporter for WTOP telling stories on air. She works as both a television and radio reporter in the Maryland and D.C. areas. 

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