A recent field study conducted by the University of Minnesota evaluated the top factors influencing truck driver parking decisions as they approach regulatory Hours-of-Service (HOS) driving limits.
Commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers and carriers operating on I-94 were surveyed to better understand their perceptions of parking shortages and the utility of parking information delivery mechanisms. The Alliance for Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) developed an online survey tool to collect feedback. More than 335 responses were collected for analysis.
The findings suggested drivers prefer to receive real-time parking information via onboard computer applications or roadside dynamic message signs (DMS) located approximately 20 miles in advance of a rest stop, and that these messages should include information such as the exact number of spaces available or status information such as "Space Availability: Low." Approximately 50 percent of truck drivers indicated the information had positive impacts on their productivity while 67 percent reported the information significantly improved their ability to find parking and comply with HOS regulations. Interestingly, 60 percent of drivers ranked onboard computers as their most preferred method for receiving truck parking availability information, followed by roadside DMS, smart phone applications, and a website.