Missouri transportation leaders say there is not enough parking for truck drivers along interstates

Published: Jun. 3, 2022 at 9:39 PM CDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - Missouri transportation leaders are trying to get to the root of supply chain issues.

A state task force says part of the problem is that there is not enough parking for truckers. The state says there are a handful of spots near Springfield that do not have enough parking options, including I-44. According to the state task force, many public and private parking locations along I-44 run out of parking spaces during overnight and early morning hours.

Several truck drivers told KY3 they agree that there is not enough parking across the state. However, many also said they feel like it is a nationwide issue.

Many truck drivers are used to long days and long nights on the road.

”I drive pretty much six to seven days a week,” Indiana trucker Brandon Seals told KY3.

Seals said he enjoys it when his wife is right by his side on the road.

”It makes it a whole lot easier when there’s someone to talk to and kind of keep the stress down a little bit,” he said.

He said the stress can definitely build up. At times it can practically be a race to find a parking spot.

”There just need to be more available spots,” Seals said. “Truck stops like this one in particular, there’s not enough space for a lot of truckers. After 8 o’clock it’s so packed if you don’t park on the side of the truck stop or find a spot within the rest area, it’s pretty much the side of the road.”

The side of the road has been a last resort for Seals and many other drivers from time to time. The state’s task force says nearly 62% of designated stops within a half mile of the interstate are over capacity from 2:00 to 3:00 a.m. Another 16% of stops are at least 80% full, according to the state task force.

”I prefer mostly night driving, that way during the afternoon hours you have more available spots like you see here now,” Seals said.

Other drivers like Florida truck driver Andre Willy said the same thing.

”Most truckers, they park at night,” Willy said. “They usually shutdown at night. So that makes it easier.”

Rest stops are required so truckers do not get drowsy during their haul.

”After eight hours, you have to have a 30 minute break,” Seals said. “After 11 hours you have to have a 10 hour reset.”

This is just another reason why truck drivers like Seals and Willy said more parking is necessary.

”It’ll be easier for us to park,” Willy said. “You know, we won’t have to worry about our safety. And you don’t have to worry about theft, because some of the products that be on the truck be very valuable.”

Missouri transportation leaders says central parts of the sate have the most parking shortages, followed by Kansas City, St. Louis, and the Southwest Districts.

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