A recent social media post from the California Highway Patrol (CHP) is calling attention to the need for more safe parking for truck drivers.

The August 10 Facebook post from CHP’s Baldwin Park Division highlighted a crash that occurred earlier in the day in Pomona, California.

According to CHP, a “sleepy” motorist veered off the road and crashed into a truck that they say was “illegally parked” in the emergency lane of the eastbound 10 Freeway.

Troopers said that the motorist suffered only minor injuries. The two people in the semi truck weren’t hurt.

CHP called out both the sleepy motorist and the illegally parked truck driver in the post:

LESSONS LEARNED:

– Don’t drive drowsy

– Don’t stop on the shoulder unless it’s an emergency

The post generated hundreds of comments from Facebook users, many of whom pointed out that the truck driver may have been forced into illegally parking due to an extreme lack of parking opportunities in California. 

Don’t agree with your position on this one! It didn’t matter whether the truck was legally parked or not, the car was wrong to slam into it! Blame the driver who committed the moving violation! I would rather have a truck driver pull over and park because he was tired or required to by law, and my obligation as a driver is to avoid any vehicle parked on the side of the road, whether it’s a truck, a CHP officer, or anyone else,” said one commenter. 

Lesson learned: Stop closing rest areas, create more legal parking for trucks,” another person remarked. 

Better than the truck driver driving while sleepy and hitting someone. So many people in California with nowhere for truckers to park when they bring your stuff in. Thats why I tell my company I won’t do California or New York,” a Facebook user said. 

One user took offense to the CHP’s “playful” tone with respect to the tired motorist: “The playful tone toward the distracted car driver is irresponsible and inappropriate. Not to mention that the fact the truck was parked illegally is irrelevant to the accident; the car would still have hit the truck had the truck just been stopped for an emergency per the law. If someone can’t avoid hitting stationary objects that aren’t in the path of travel, they have no business being behind a wheel. I feel as though the tone of this post would have been much more serious had the car driver been drunk or excessively speeding. Sorry if that seems too blunt, but law enforcement across the country seems to dismiss distracted driving when it’s just as serious as other offenses that affect a driver’s ability to drive safely.

This user’s comment appeared to sum up the whole of the backlash that the CHP post generated:

Well guess this post didn’t go the way you planned CHP – Baldwin Park…Lessons Learned

-the car would of still crashed. Possibly taking out more people. Thank you trucker

-CA needs more truck parking

-CHP always blames the trucker even though statistics show it’s usually the cars fault

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