Truck drivers are the unsung heroes of our country, transporting goods and materials from one end of the country to the other. We spend long hours on the road, often sacrificing time with our families to make sure our economy keeps running smoothly.
It is highly important to ensure that truck drivers have safe and efficient places to park to comply with Federal Hours of Service Regulations. The truth is, finding a place to park a big rig can be a major challenge. Rest areas and truck stops fill up quickly, leaving drivers with few options for safe and legal parking.
Did you know that the REAL Women in Trucking was the 1st organization to actively support and mobilize truck drivers to advocate for Jason’s Law, the safe truck parking bill following the murder of Jason Rivenburg in 2009? RWIT was also the only organization that sent an actual truck driver to every Truck Parking Coalition Meeting presented by the Federal Highway Administration when Jason’s Law became part of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) Transportation Bill.
RWIT President Desiree Wood is cited as a resource in the first FHWA Jason’s Law Truck Parking Report and acted as a project manager in the 2013 Jason’s Law Driver Survey. As a result of Jason’s Law, states are now required to study truck parking every two years and include it in their freight plans when they seek transportation funding. Truck parking is also an eligible activity for funding.
Today, many of the RWIT Board members are appointed committee members in various state freight advisory committees and are sought-after speakers for data researchers and urban planners who are studying and working to implement truck parking projects nationwide.
On March 16th, 2023, RWIT President, Desiree Wood spoke at the Miami Dade City Commissioners Meeting regarding a zoning issue for a new Transportation Hub Terminal which would include a minimum of 400 truck parking spaces. The location will also have bathrooms, laundry, showers, food and other services for truck drivers.
Guess what? Her presentation was well received and the application was APPROVED! This is a great step forward for a community to recognize that they must be partners to support basic human needs required by truck drivers to do their job!
WATCH the Miami Dade City Commissioners Meeting HERE.
While this is certainly a positive development, there's still much work to be done to address the critical need for more truck parking. We urge our members to become more involved by attending state freight advisory meetings or contacting us at RWIT so we can make an introduction to help you attend. It is important the voice of truck drivers is heard at these events.
Truck parking is an equity issue and we must work together to continue advocating for the rights and well-being of truck drivers. Together, we can ensure that truck drivers receive the support and recognition they deserve as the backbone of our economy.
Interested in supporting this cause? Your support through paid annual membership allows us to continue our advocacy efforts. We are always seeking active members who will provide their specific area insight on truck parking that we can share in virtual and in-person meetings. Contact us for more information.