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The many potential impacts of the truck parking shortage

One difficulty trucking companies are coming across these days here in the U.S. is a shortage of truck parking. In a previous post, we noted that one problem this can create for trucking companies is the possibility of their truck drivers ending up parking in unauthorized areas. However, this is by no means the only problem the shortage can give rise to.

A recent TruckerPath report found that finding parking can take a long time for truck drivers in today’s era of parking shortages. This can increase the amount of time drivers are out on the roads. Among the things this can have impacts on is hours of service (HOS) rule compliance. The report noted that a majority of the truck drivers it surveyed said that troubles with finding parking had caused them to violate HOS rules. A trucking company’s truckers being accused of not being in compliance with HOS rules can be problematic for a company in many contexts, including in personal injury cases coming out of a truck accident.

Meanwhile, the American Transportation Research Institute noted that the parking shortage (in combination with other factors), may be forcing trucks onto congested routes at high-traffic times of day. This could lead to worsening traffic congestion, which can impact the amount of time trucking routes take and the costs associated with transporting goods. So, congestion coming from parking shortage problems could have negative economic consequences for trucking companies.

Another thing worth noting is that truck drivers having to be out on the roads more and having to spend a lot of time in congested areas could have impacts on driver fatigue. So, the parking shortage could also have impacts related to the likelihood of drowsy driving among truck drivers. Drowsy driving by truck drivers can create truck accident risks, so doing what they can to ensure their drivers aren’t fatigued behind the wheel can be important for trucking companies.

As one can see, truck parking shortages can affect trucking companies in a wide range of ways. So, what is done here in the U.S. in the future to try to address and fix the parking shortage could be a matter of significant consequence for trucking companies.

Source: FleetOwner, “Truck parking and traffic congestion intertwined,” Sean Kilcarr, May 18, 2017

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