Jason’s Law truck parking survey now open

 As any driver knows, parking is at a premium at truck stops, even during the middle of the day. A new survey is being conducted to get an update on the parking situation. ( Photo: Brian Straight/FreightWaves )

As any driver knows, parking is at a premium at truck stops, even during the middle of the day. A new survey is being conducted to get an update on the parking situation. (Photo: Brian Straight/FreightWaves)

The Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) is now seeking truck drivers for a survey on truck parking.

The survey is an update to the Jason’s Law Truck Parking survey conducted in 2015. This survey was mandated by MAP-21, the last major transportation bill. The site says the survey should only take five to seven minutes to complete with responses anonymized and aggregated.

It is available here: https://tti.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_eOMh1HWadr3dHyB.

According to the survey, it is “intended to update the 2015 evaluation of the capability of the States to provide adequate parking and rest facilities for commercial motor vehicles engaged in interstate transportation.”

The last government study on truck parking was completed in 2015. The Jason’s Law Truck Parking Survey found that parking shortages are a nationwide problem, with 37 state DOTs (72.5%) reporting they had problems with truck parking.

 Wrap up the week with JP and Chad.  Click here to listen on demand .

Wrap up the week with JP and Chad. Click here to listen on demand.

The survey also found that in official parking locations (both public and private):

  •  30 states report observing shortages in public rest areas;

  • 16 states report observing shortages in private truck stops;

  • 16 states report observing shortages in designated pullouts or vistas;

  • 18 states report observing shortages in commercial areas;

  • 14 states report observing shortages at highway weigh stations;

 In unofficial parking locations:

  •  24 states report observing trucks parking along freeway interchange ramps;

  • 23 states report observing trucks parking along freeway shoulders;

  • 18 states report observing trucks parking on conventional highway roadsides;

  • 12 states report observing trucks parking on local streets.

 “Public agencies operating rest areas routinely observe overcrowding at rest areas, pullouts, weigh stations, and other official parking locations. Commercial vehicle enforcement and safety personnel observe trucks parked at a variety of unofficial locations, including freeway ramps, roadsides, and local streets. Drivers and dispatchers report difficulty in finding safe parking locations to obtain required driver rest. The reports from states and drivers reveal parallel perceptions of shortages,” the 2015 report found.

The states reporting the most severe challenges were: New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York, Virginia, Maryland, South Carolina, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, California, Washington, and Oregon.

The government also created the National Coalition on Truck Parking to look into issues of truck parking.

Jason’s Law was named after truck driver Jason Rivenburg, who was shot and killed in 2009. Rivenburg was parked for the evening in an abandoned gas station after arriving too early for a delivery in South Carolina. Forced to find a place to park, the driver found the gas station, where Willie Pelzer killed him for $7 during a robbery. Pelzer was convicted of killing Rivenburg and sentenced to life in prison.

Rivenburg’s widow, Hope, who gave birth to twins 13 days after he was killed, sought to keep his memory alive and make changes to law to improve parking conditions for truckers. The Jason’s Law website details those efforts.