The U.S. DOT’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) is planning to conduct a new truck parking survey and assess the truck parking shortage problem. A request to approve the planned survey has been forwarded to the White House.
One of the programs of the 2012 MAP-21 highway funding law is to allocate federal funds to bolster the availability of areas for truck parking. The FHWA was, therefore, asked to complete studies around the shortage of truck parking spaces.
The agency plans to survey state DOT officials, truck stop operators, and enforcement personnel to learn more about the parking problem that the industry is facing and, hopefully, come up with a way to address it.
According to the 2014 FHWA survey, nearly all states continue to suffer from inadequate parking no matter the time or season. Some states fared worse than others, with Rhode Island posing the most difficulty for commercial drivers. The FHWA’s current survey aims to follow up on the previous one that garnered valuable information from industry stakeholders about parking issues.
The FHWA is looking to find information on rest facilities, legislative issues, financial constraints, truck parking plans, parking demand, availability of land, truck parking information systems, insurance requirements, and other important matters.
The survey proposal is currently available for public comment on the regulations.gov website until May 23. The agency would like to know the public’s opinion on the survey and how it could best serve the trucking industry. You can click here to file a public comment on the proposed survey.
ELDs and the parking shortage problem
With the ELD mandate now in place, drivers are expected to be more responsible with their hours of service. Because of stricter regulations, commercial drivers are often required to quickly find appropriate parking spaces or park their vehicles where they should not.
It can be said that the ELD mandate has exacerbated the parking shortage problem. However, with the right ELD, drivers can plan their hours more efficiently and plan ahead to avoid the parking problem.
For instance, the KeepTruckin Electronic Logbook App has a very intuitive and user-friendly hours-of-service clock that shows drivers exactly how much time they have left in their shift and cycle so that they can plan their trip — and parking time — accordingly.