Analysis: Truck parking more troublesome in the Eastern U.S. than west

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Truck parking expansion was left out of President Joe Biden's $1.2 trillion infrastructure plan – a big deal for drivers on the East Coast.

According to truck parking data analysis by TruckerPath, a mobile app for truckers that provides access to up-to-date information about truck stops, real-time available parking, fuel prices, weigh station status, and truck scales and wash locations, truck parking tends to be more crowded on the East Coast than the West Coast, and it also suggests that it gets more full at night (7 p.m. -10 p.m.) than at noon (11 a.m.-2 p.m.).

Trucker Path Chief Marketing Officer Chris Oliver said East Coast parking locations tend to be more full than the West Coast locations because of population density, and noted that while there are certainly large metropolitan areas in both the east and the west, "the big difference is the space between those large metro areas.

"Take, for example, the area between Boston and Washington D.C. on the East Coast," he said, "which is roughly 400 miles. In between those two cities are three more major metro areas: New York, Philadelphia, and Baltimore. Conversely, between San Francisco and Los Angeles on the West Coast, which is also about 400 miles, there is mostly farmland and mountains. That space between allows for a wider dispersion of parking locations to support the truck traffic volumes."

The five states with the least truck parking (from high to low) at noon are Massachusetts, New Jersey, Washington, North Carolina and Maryland. The five states with the least truck parking (from high to low) at night are West Virginia, Tennessee, Massachusetts, Kentucky and Arkansas.

Massachusetts has the least truck parking at noon, and West Virginia has the fullest truck parking status night.

The five states with the most available truck parking (from high to low) at noon are North Dakota, Montana South, Dakota Michigan and Nevada. States with the most available truck parking (from high to low) at night are South Dakota, Michigan, Vermont, Nevada and Florida.

North Dakota has the most available truck parking at noon while South Dakota has the most abundant truck parking status night.

Trucker Path uses a crowd-sourced approach to capture parking availability directly from its community of 1 million-plus commercial drivers and there are roughly 20,000 known parking locations in its app. 

Jason Cannon has written about trucking and transportation for more than a decade and serves as Chief Editor of Commercial Carrier Journal. A Class A CDL holder, Jason is a graduate of the Porsche Sport Driving School, an honorary Duckmaster at The Peabody in Memphis, Tennessee, and a purple belt in Brazilian jiu jitsu. Reach him at [email protected].