Mar. 18, 2020

MIFFLINBURG - Rep. David Rowe (R-Snyder/Union) is calling on Gov. Tom Wolf and the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) to open rest area parking lots for truck drivers, saying that the decision by the Wolf administration to completely shut down these rest areas poses a serious, immediate safety risk.

“It is critical that truck drivers have a place to stop and sleep at a time when they are being heavily relied upon to transport products that people need during this health crisis,” said Rowe. “Not only does this action hurt the economy but it needlessly puts lives at risk. Denying safe parking spots for truckers and drivers who need to rest is a huge safety issue and will potentially compromise the essential logistical infrastructure that keeps our grocery stores and hospitals well-supplied.” In 2018, the NTB Trucking company published a 2006 study from the American Transportation Association which detailed the possible major negative impacts on society if the trucking industry is halted. For instance, the study found that medical supplies, hospital supplies, fuel, and food shortages would occur within 24 hours “if trucks stopped.”

So far, Pennsylvania is the only state to close public rest areas. All 17 rest areas on the turnpike have closed their fast-food service and indoor bathrooms.

Bipartisan federal legislation was recently introduced to address a widespread shortage of rest areas for truck drivers across the country.

Pennsylvania is the major link between the Northeast region and the South and Midwest where thousands of truck drivers pass through daily.

Representative David Rowe
85th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Alison Haas