JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Florida Department of Transportation will be installing a new parking system this week to improve safety for truck drivers.
The Truck Parking Availability System will track how many open parking spots are available at certain rest stops to prevent truck drivers from parking along the highway or ramp shoulders.
FDOT will install sensors at several rest stops to track the number of available spaces. The information will then be displayed on message signs ahead of the rest areas. FDOT said the goal is to give drivers the information they need to plan where they can safely stop and rest.
The Florida Trucking Association said drivers are federally mandated to stop after driving for a certain number of hours. Ken Armstrong, CEO of the Florida Trucking Association, said the new parking system will make it safer and more efficient for truck drivers to find a safe place to park.
However, Armstrong said there is still more that needs to be done.
“It’s only a small piece of the puzzle,” said Armstrong. “We desperately need more capacity for parking.”
FDOT will install the parking system on I-95 in Nassau and St. Johns counties, I-75 in Alachua, Columbia and Hamilton counties, and I-10 in Madison and Baker counties.
The project is expected to cost $3.7 million.