New Mexico completes truck parking initiative

© New Mexico DOT

The New Mexico Department of Transportation (NMDOT) recently completed a $2.7 million truck parking initiative along Interstate 10.

“NMDOT is excited to implement this first-of-its-kind system in New Mexico and is committed to finding and implementing technology to support safety on our highways,” NMDOT Cabinet Secretary Ricky Serna.

Via the state’s Truck Parking Availability System, drivers can use electronic road signs and the state’s 511 system to locate available parking along I-10. This includes all six rest areas.

The state will work with application developers to integrate the information into various trucking apps.

In 2019, approximately 13 percent of the 5,000 fatal truck crashes in the United States involved drowsy truck drivers, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

Many truck drivers park on shoulders, ramps, or other dangerous places because of a lack of safe parking. The majority of drivers, 78 percent, spend more than 30 minutes searching for safe parking, according to a 2020 I-10 Corridor Coalition poll.

The U.S. Department of Transportation partially funded the initiative with a $6.85 million grant, matched 1:1 by the I-10 Coalition.

Once fully implemented in 2025, the system will provide information on more than 550 parking spots at 37 public rest areas in four states.