The House of Representatives appears to be much less interested in spending money than the Senate. While the Senate passed a bill authorizing $1 trillion in spending for infrastructure, the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure put forth its portion of the 2022 Budget Reconciliation Bill. It has $60 billion set for infrastructure and carbon reduction. This funding omits one of the greatest issues plaguing the trucking industry: truck parking.
Barking About Truck Parking
Owner-Operators Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) President and CEO Todd Spencer was livid at the news. “Despite the long history of broad, bipartisan support, numerous government studies and repeated pleas from truck drivers, Democrats on the T&I Committee opposed efforts to address trucking’s number one safety concern, the lack of safe parking. Truckers likely face another five years of a worsening crisis that jeopardizes their safety on a daily basis.”
Indeed, with many more trucks than authorized spots to fill them, truckers are having to get creative. This includes setting up shop across multiple 4-wheeler spaces or parallel parking in residential neighborhoods for the night.
There is a glimmer of hope for a solution, though. The budget includes “$6 billion to advance local surface transportation projects”, which could include more truck parking.
The federal government shows little interest in resolving the crisis. Truckers may have to get creative with how they resolve it themselves. Some companies have started giving their drivers a stipend for paid parking. Others are parking in lots with many consecutive open spaces for standard cars, using it as a makeshift commercial truck spot. Whatever the case, the demand for parking spots is significantly higher than the availability.
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