America depends on truck drivers and their 18-wheelers to move and deliver our goods.
One of the biggest problems for truckers is a widespread lack of places to park their big rigs for a few hours of rest.
The problem is real, and the shortage of parking places for semis and their fatigued drivers is critical.
“Sleeping on the job will get most people fired. For long-distance truckers, it can get people killed,” reads an article titled “No Parking, Mo’ Problems: Inside the Deadly Shortage of Long-Term Parking for Long-Haul Truckers,” on the private transportation website dmv.org.
To alleviate the problem regionally, the Florida Department of Transportation has identified six sites for truck parking along Interstate 4 between the Polk- Osceola county line and Daytona Beach.
The FDOT is moving into the design phase of the project.
On that 75-mile stretch, there are currently just 36 public truck-parks spaces near Longwood; the FDOT estimates at least 481 truck-parking spaces are needed.
“Volusia, Seminole and Osceola County have one site each along the I-4 corridor, while there are three sites in Orange County,” FDOT District 5 spokesman Timothy Freed told The Beacon.
The Volusia County site is about 5 miles west of Interstate 95 and is bisected by Interstate 4.
The plan is for part of the parking there to be on the west side of the superhighway and the other part on the east side.
The westbound property consists of 116.8 acres, to be designed for 253 truck-parking spaces.
The eastbound property has 73.3 acres, which is to be designed for 275 truck-parking spaces.
Each of the sites will have rest-rooms and lighting.
The estimated cost of the Volusia County parking place is $110 million. The tandem parking plots likely are home to threatened and endangered species, according to the FDOT.
The Seminole County site is not far from Volusia County, just south of the CSX Railroad tracks and Lake Monroe.
The 18.3-acre parcel under consideration there is situated between I-4 and U.S. Highway 7-92 and just south of the CSX Railroad tracks and Lake Monroe.
That plot could be developed into a parking palace for 157 trucks at an estimated cost of $25.6 million.