The Pennsylvania Motor Truck Association (PMTA) has raised concerns about the state’s closure of its rest stops with the Keystone State’s officials and a resumption of permitted parking at those sites is possible.
Kevin Stewart, the president of PMTA, told FreightWaves that the state is “going to reevaluate over the next day or so” its decision to close Pennsylvania’s 65 rest stops.
The concern Stewart has is that if the rest stops are reopened just for parking, the bathroom facilities will remain closed. Those bathroom facilities are especially important for drivers taking their mandatory 30-minute rest break, he said.
Stewart noted that most of his drivers will use overnight facilities at truck stops for their longer breaks. But it is the relatively bare bones rest stops that provide a lot of capacity for the shorter breaks. (Those rest stops are essentially three things: parking spots, vending machines and bathrooms without showers.)
As reported, a state spokeswoman told FreightWaves that the state was reevaluating the decision.
Stewart said Pennsylvania officials might not have been aware of the impact of their decision on the trucking sector. “I don’t think initially they did,” he said. The PMTA was not aware of the shutdowns until the announcement came out on March 16. “We were not privy to that,” Stewart said.
The organization reached out to the state soon after that, Stewart added. “Once we reached out to them I think it has brought them an understanding,” he said. “It’s kind of unchartered territory.”