WKYT Investigates | Truckers continue to have trouble finding places to park
The president of the Kentucky Trucking Association said finding parking spaces for truckers is a big issue. Now, with two Walmart stores on Interstate 75 in Kentucky refusing to allow truck drivers to park overnight, the problem is only getting worse.
WKYT Investigates has previously reported on Walmart's decision to contract with R & R Management to watch the Walmart parking lots in Berea and Williamsburg. The company is known to put a boot on trucks that are parked in the lot, then fine the drivers as much as $500 to get the boot off.
There are signs displayed around the Berea and Williamsburg Walmart stores that tell truckers not to stay overnight, or they will be fined.
Federal regulations require drivers to stop and rest for certain amounts of time. Kentucky Trucking Association President Rick Taylor said, "They need to stop somewhere to get their 30 minute break. They need to stop somewhere to get their ten hours of rest and that's where the issue comes in." He went on, "If you drive any interstate in the morning or in the evening you'll see drivers parked on exit and entry ramps, which technically, that's illegal. But they need somewhere to stop and get their rest."
Taylor said this isn't a new problem, nor is it a Kentucky problem. All over the country, truckers are worried about where they'll stop for rest.
So Walmart's decision to ban overnight parking hasn't made things easier. A few months ago, a spokesperson for Walmart's corporate office said the reasoning had to do with too many trucks crowding specific Walmart lots, like Williamsburg, and leaving trash behind.
Taylor said he isn't mad at Walmart- rules are rules. However, rest is a rule, too. According to the federal government, truckers have to stop somewhere and the spaces are getting fewer and farther between. "Capacity is an issue. There needs to be more places, yes. We need to have hours of service rules to make sure vehicles are operating safely. The drivers are operating safely, but we also need to find some place for them to park if that's the expectation," Taylor explained.
The Kentucky Trucking Association says that one in 15 people work in the industry.
R & R Management did not return our calls on this issue. They have also not responded to our previous reporting.