3 Tips To Safe Truck Parking
Parking a semi-truck in a safe place is an important factor in the trucking industry’s radar. For years now because of Hope Rivenburg, a widow who pushes for safe truck parking since her husband’s murder. Truck driver Jason Rivenburg couldn’t find a safe place to shut down for the night at a truck stop. Because of this situation, it forced him to pull onto the side of a road. Someone shot and killed him that night for less than $30. They passed the law to assess safe parking conditions for truck drivers in 2014 and was back in the news this spring as lawmakers continue to look for solutions.
Last week, we talked about the updates to personal conveyance rules, a much-needed change that goes hand in hand with providing for safe parking as protected by Jason’s Law. The PC update allows a trucker to move or keep going for safe parking on their own time.
But what does that look like when parking without a truck stop? What about when a driver asks, “Where can I park my trailer?” Here are three tips to assist with finding a safe place to park a truck for the night.
Before you put those wheels in motion, take a look at your route for the day. It’s good to know where you want to end the day, then plan a back-up about 50 miles closer in case a dock delay or slow traffic slow your drive down.
Use your resources.
Safe truck parking? Yes, there’s an app for that. Large truck stops, such as Pilot and Flying J, also have apps that allow drivers to reserve or prepay for parking spots at their locations. Hop on the CB to talk to other truckers about availability when it’s time to start looking. Call your dispatcher or driver manager for assistance.
Avoid trouble spots.
This goes well with planning ahead. When you’ve set your schedule, leave early or late to avoid dense traffic areas at heavy times. An American Transportation Research Institute Article found that most truckers are looking for a place between 4-11 pm, so if you haven’t reserved one with an app or already know an out of the way place on your route, take your break on the off hours if possible.
The Federal Highway Administration, under Jason’s Law survey, found that there are about 3 million truck drivers on the road every day and only 300,000 parking spaces to fit them. The competition is fierce out there, but our drivers’ safety is of utmost importance. Practice safety, trust your instincts and plan ahead as best you can.