Here’s your chance to speak out on Canada’s lack of truck parking

It’s no secret among professional drivers that there are too few places for truckers to stop for rest. Now it appears the situation is on the radar of some influential decision-makers.
The Owner-Operator Business Association of Canada (OBAC), of which we’re a member, is asking all its driver members to complete a Transport Canada survey that may be used to help direct future funding.
In the words of OBAC: ‘Here’s an opportunity to add your two cents to this most important debate. We need every driver to get involved; it’s drivers themselves who can identify areas in Canada where designated truck parking is difficult to find, and help determine how shortages of parking impact your safety, productivity, and personal well-being.
‘Take the survey yourself, then get at least five more drivers to add their voice, even if you have to walk them to a computer and help them turn it on.’
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James Menzies is editor of Today's Trucking. He has been covering the Canadian trucking industry for more than 20 years and holds a CDL. Reach him at or follow him on Twitter at @JamesMenzies.

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  • Hello. The lack of parking in Ontario is disgraceful. The government in this province is disgraceful as well. If it were up to me I wouldn’t even live in this province, but my wife wants to be close to her family. Dalton McGuinty wants to legislate trucking to death, as well as trying to build the MTO into his own personal revenue generating army. But as soon as it is time to step up and rebuild Ontario’s 23 service centres, all of a sudden that is the job of the private sector. In this economy, I highly doubt that the government, or anyone in the private sector wants to invest the time, money, and energy that it would require to do this properly. It is much easier to just drag feet, and kick this ball back and forth and hope that it goes away. I lose faith in this industry more and more everyday. Not because of the people on the trucking side, but because of the Liberal government, and how they are ruining a great industry, and a great province.

  • Rest areas are the most important part of travelling to keep roads safer for all. Truck stops gives truckers a chance to take a break from the monotony of driving.
    Ontario Government should take a look at other Provinces and the U.S.A for a good example of truck stops and rest areas.

  • As we all know it is dangerous to park on the side of the highway as well as being illegal.The garbage and human waste that is being left along the roadside is unreal .An article in the Toronto Star a couple of week back cited these same complaints.
    It is a long drive across Toronto during rush hour if you are almost out of hours or if you have to use a washroom.
    According to the article in the Toronto paper it could be at least 5yrs before these service are rebuilt.
    Land is so expensive around the GTA that with todays economy that no one would be silly enough to invest money in building a truck stop.
    The few places that a truck can get off the road east of Toronto are usually full by late afternoon which means that if you are going east of Toronto you have find a place to park somewhere west of Toronto and lose another 2hrs crossing the city in the morning.
    This Liberal government has made it quite that clear that they have no interest in the trucking industry.and that they have no BACKBONE. The only time they even know we are out there is when they throw on the PARK light at a weigh scale and write us up for something.

  • Big Problem and big issue. In West Virginia recently no rest areas at all, What does this mean.
    Well TICKETS TICKETS AND MORE TICKETS. H.O.S. violations, no foresight or forethought whatsoever. SImply cut back save money and be dammned with safety and on the orad or on the side of the road. Ontario in it’s inept way of thinking let someone close all of the rest areas at the same time and drivers have nowhere to pullover and stop for mile upon mile upon mile.
    IN the name of upgrades. Come on ?? Then we have an overzealous police officer not only wasting taxpayer time and money for smoking in a cab, but giving tickets for parking to close to the road. Well none of us can have our cake and eat it. What do we do? DRIVE ILLEGAL AND GO RIGHT THROUGH THE PROVINCE. Maybe Ontario should invest more money not just in rest areas/Restaurant facilities etc, but install Trcu pullover rest areas, where we / they can pull over and get rest. LEGALLY
    Talk listen communicate and you will find out the problems as they exist. Better yet. Take Premier Mcguinty in a truck from the QUEBEC ONTARIO BORDER (START AT MONTREAL ACTUALLY) AND FINISH UP AT WINDSOR. First hand knowledge would be great.

  • Kevin, Please be sure to circulate the survey to your drivers. If the survey doesn’t get an adequate response, it would be too easy for Transport Canada to say ‘We asked the industry if there was a problem and apparently there wasn’t’ and then wipe their hands of the issue.

  • “No forsight or forethought”
    but lets put EOBRs in the truck just
    to make sure the driver will get a Hrs service charge
    when there is now place to stop
    Got to love it.

  • Sorry to be so negative at this point James but” Circulate the survey”.
    And fill it out on your own time we do not pay you for it,but your
    just sitting on a on or off ramp thanks to EOBRs so I am sure you do not

  • To Collin: You mentioned the US system? It was pretty good but state after state are closing rest areas down due to lack of funds. So the problem we have here are going to be North American wide, then what are we going do? I fear we will all be paying more fines for parking where we shouldn’t or getting hit with HOS fines. Either way we loose, the government wins with more fines being issued.

  • I’d like to add to Kevin Scobels comments, that Premier Mcguinty take a truck ride all the way across ALL of Ontario, right to the Manitoba Boarder, and see how long he can stay awake to help the driver find somewhere in the great white north to even pullover nevermind park!! It gets pretty bad when there is a snowstorm and you have no choice but to keep driving b/c all the known spots and truck stops are plugged solid with trucks, until you come to a road closure and you get to sit on the hwy for hours while no one is out plowing b/c it’s too dangerous to be out there.

  • You know before i become a truck driver 15yrs. ago i used to be a law abiding citizen.Since then that has gone all to hell.With all the ridiculous rule and regulations they have forced us to endure over the years,it makes it almost impossible to do this job anymore.So speaking only for myself i will do whatever it takes to feed my family,so i suggest the goverment better wake up and take notice of things like REST AREA’S,weigh stations that are more interested in writing tickets than actually looking for real safety problems,HOS regs. that keep you on the road when you need a break, and idiots like that guy at the OTA who has never met a reporter or photographer he never liked,coming up with speed limits that are down right dangerous in certain parts of the continent.I believe all this neglect will only encourage more and more drivers to turn a blind eye to their poorly thought out regulations and do it their way.

  • Reading the paragraph of the survey made me laugh. We need rest areas to take a break, you know for meals and washroom stops. My company for the past twelve years is on the same mantra that we are “a federally regulated company” and there by we don’t have to give you breaks……….and they haven’t. What’s up with that. The country needs us for all it’s transport needs, so why are we treated so poorly?

  • from coast to coast there is a severe shortage of safe places for trucks to park at night or in bad weather !!!