A new study from the University of Kentucky found that the rate of fatigue-related crashes by commercial vehicle drivers increases the further that the crash site is from a rest area or truck stop.
Using data from crashes that occurred between 2005 to 2014 in which the truck driver was at fault, some of which involved fatigue, researchers found that truck driver-at-fault crashes caused by fatigue increased by two and a half times if the driver had to travel another 20 — 40 miles to reach safe parking. The risk for truck driver-at-fault crashes involving fatigue skyrocketed to seven times if the driver had to travel 40 or more miles to reach safe parking.
The University of Kentucky researchers emphasized how important it is to expand truck parking nationwide: “Our results support the need for increased truck parking on the federally designated National Network for trucks, particularly on parkway routes. Existing rest areas should be expanded for additional truck parking and new truck rest areas should be established, particularly on parkways.”
During the study, researchers also found that truck driver-at-fault fatigue-related crashes increased on parkways rather than interstates because parkways tended to have fewer truck parking opportunities than interstates.