An interesting topic came up within a group of my fellow drivers the other day. The topic was based on a young new driver in a snowstorm that was tired and looking for a place to park.


The story unfolds like this…. This young new driver’s day consisted of being stuck on numerous occasions two of which he needed to be pulled out of. This made him decide to call it a day as he was mentally and physically worn out. The decision was made to stop at a travel center to park the truck, rest, and regroup. From what I understand this was the third or fourth truck stop the young driver had visited in his quest to find a parking spot to park

Finally, out of desperation, this young driver parked his truck in an area that was not a designated parked parking spot. Next on the agenda was to go inside and get something to eat which was the only part of this plan that went off without a hitch.

When this wore out frustrated young driver returned to his truck which was not parked in a designated spot he found a note. The note basically said, remove the truck from its current placement or it was going to be removed by a tow truck. Frustrated at this point and with some available time on his hours of service he restarted the truck and drove to the delivery to see if he could park there. In the end, all ended up working out fine except for the driver questioning his career of choice.

All of this led to a discussion amongst ourselves to what we would have advised this young driver to do in the situation described in the above paragraphs. Here is the advice we would have dispensed for this situation.

1. Do not drive if you are tired

2. Do not drive if you feel unsafe

3. Do not drive if you find yourself mentally unstable due to being frustrated

4. Do not just park your truck and leave it unattended in a non-designated parking spot without permission

5. Visit the shop or fuel desk and ask if they have any suggestions to where you can park after explaining your situation

My experience in these types of situations has been that if I ask advise from the establishment I was patronizing they typically would find a solution. Often times the shop has instructed me to park in front of one of their repair bays which housed a project which was going to take some time or they were not using at the current time. In this case, they would get my cell phone number so they could call me so I could move the truck if necessary.

The key here was to not assume it was ok to park a truck in a non-designated parking spot. I end this with asked what suggestion may have you given this young new commercial driver?

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Henry Albert

Henry Albert is the owner of Albert Transport, Inc., based in Statesville, NC. Before participating in the "Slice of Life" program, Albert drove a 2001 Freightliner Century Class S/T™, and will use his Cascadia for general freight and a dry van trailer. Albert, who has been a trucker since 1983, was recognized by Overdrive as its 2007 Trucker of the Year.

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