The British Columbia Trucking Association (BCTA) strongly endorsed today’s announcement by Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Todd Stone about the construction of a new short-term commercial truck parking facility at Nordel Way in Delta.
An expansion of parking facilities in the Lower Mainland for large commercial vehicles is much needed given the large number of trucks operating into and out of the Lower Mainland that have few short-term parking options.
“BC’s road system is the workplace of commercial vehicle operators,” says Louise Yako, BCTA’s President & CEO. “It’s extremely important to provide them with access to parking facilities that accommodate their vehicles and their needs. BCTA welcomes the Ministry’s investment in this new facility and its foresight in including truck parking generally as a priority in its new Provincial Trucking Strategy.”
Parking facilities are a crucial part of any transportation network used by commercial vehicles to transport goods to consumers. Yet the sheer size of a commercial vehicle and the number travelling BC’s road network have made truck parking a challenge. This is especially true when the economy is healthy, since this means there are more trucks on the road delivering goods and equipment to vital projects that provide jobs and resources to British Columbians.
Commercial truck drivers benefit from having safe places to park and do all those things other workers may take for granted: take a break, have a meal, use the washroom or complete some paperwork. They are also required to stop and take regular breaks by law, and to stop driving when they’ve reached a daily maximum number of hours. Professional drivers plan their trips strategically to comply with requirements. This task is much easier when a network of rest areas with sufficient space – and parking spaces – exists.
Considering the comfort of drivers is also becoming more important. “The trucking industry is facing a projected shortage of 2,200 to 4,500 drivers in BC by 2020,” says Ms. Yako. “To attract new recruits to truck driving, we need to be thinking beyond compensation and scheduling. What is their day going to be like? Taking the guesswork out of something as simple as where to park will help.”
BCTA highlighted the need for more parking facilities in urban areas and better safety rest areas throughout BC during the ministry’s BC on the Move consultation last year.