Arizona reveals truck parking expansion plan

Trucking news and briefs for Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2023:

Statewide truck parking expansion planned in Arizona

ADOT truck parking implementation planThe Arizona Department of Transportation is proposing to add truck parking spaces across the state with a new truck parking implementation plan.ADOTThe Arizona Department of Transportation, in an effort to address a shortage of truck parking in the state, has developed a statewide truck parking plan that recommends expanding parking at existing rest areas and adding three new facilities.

ADOT is seeking public input as transportation planners look to construct 846 truck parking spaces in 10 locations along interstates in areas with the greatest needs. These locations are along Interstate 10, Interstate 40 and Interstate 8 and are at existing rest areas and three proposed “safe lots” that would provide parking only for commercial trucks.

ADOT is recommending the additional parking based on demand at existing rest areas and where undesignated truck parking occurs. Other factors include cost, ease of implementation and input from the trucking industry. The plan recommends first adding parking to three critical locations -- Burnt Wells (103 spaces), Meteor Crater (140 spaces), and a new safe lot near Willcox (127 spaces) -- based on the $32 million in funding currently available through the National Highway Freight Program. 

Parking at the additional seven locations below could be added as ADOT seeks future funding:

  • I-40 Crazy Creek, a new safe lot about 35 miles east of Holbrook, 176 spaces
  • I-10 Ehrenberg Rest Area, 51 spaces
  • I-10 San Simon Rest Area, 80 spaces
  • I-10 Bouse Wash Rest Area, 55 spaces
  • I-40 Seligman, a new safe lot, 72 spaces
  • I-10 Sacaton Rest Area, 20 spaces
  • I-8 Mohawk Rest Area, 22 spaces

The added parking would be in addition to $18 million in current projects that are expanding parking at five rest areas, also funded by the National Highway Freight Program.

  • I-40 Haviland Rest Area
  • I-40 Parks Rest Area
  • I-17 Christensen Rest Area
  • I-17 McGuireville Rest Area
  • I-17 Sunset Point Rest Area

The draft statewide truck parking implementation plan is now available for review. Comments can be provided on the plan here, by emailing [email protected], or calling the ADOT Project Information Line at 855-712-8530 through Tuesday, Dec. 19.

[Related: 'Potential adverse safety impacts': Speed limiters, truck parking discussed in Senate hearing]

Florida officials seek waiver for CDL testing regs

The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) has applied for an exemption from a CDL skills testing regulation. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will publish a notice in the Federal Register and open a public comment period Tuesday.

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FLHSMV seeks a waiver from the regulation requiring the three-part CDL skills test to be administered and successfully completed in the following order: pre-trip inspection, basic vehicle control skills, and on-road skills.

The agency is seeking an exemption to allow the tester, at their discretion, to continue testing an applicant who fails the pre-trip inspection or basic vehicle controls segments of the CDL test and allow the applicant to come back at a later date to retake the failed segment(s) only.

FMCSA said in its notice that nearly all CDL skills tests conducted in Florida are done so by third-party testers, and if an applicant fails one segment of the test, they cannot attempt the next segment(s) and must return on a different day to retake all three parts of the test.

The FLHSMV said that the most failed segment of the test is the pre-trip inspection, and if the exemption is granted, the tester could continue to test basic vehicle control skills and on-road skills in this instance. If the CDL applicant passed these other portions of the test, they could return at a later date and retake just the pre-trip inspection portion of the test, allowing compliance staff to better utilize their time and resources in completing the required monitoring of third-party testers.

FLHSMV said it believes the exemption would not compromise safety, because the decision to continue with the test would reside with certified, experienced testers. The FLHSMV also noted that, with the implementation of the federal Entry-Level Driver Training regulations, most applicants being tested have been certified as proficient in operating commercial motor vehicles, having completed behind-the-wheel training that prepares them to safely operate a commercial motor vehicle during the on-road portion of the CDL skills test.

FMCSA will accept comments on the request for 30 days beginning Dec. 5. Comments can be filed at here through Jan. 4.

[Related: Entry Level Driver Training rules may miss the mark, but some are doing it right]

Landstar announces leadership transition

Landstar System, Inc. announced Monday that its Board of Directors has named Frank A. Lonegro as President and Chief Executive Officer, effective Feb. 2, 2024.

James B. Gattoni, who currently serves as President and CEO, will continue to serve in that role through the date of the company’s 2023 fourth quarter earnings release conference call, currently scheduled for Feb. 1, 2024, following which he will be transitioning to the role of Special Advisor to the CEO before his anticipated retirement in July 2024.

Lonegro will also be appointed to the Board of Directors of Landstar as of his commencement as CEO, succeeding Gattoni who will be stepping down from the Board as of Feb. 2.

Lonegro is joining Landstar from Beacon Building Products, where he currently serves as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Prior to working at Beacon, he worked for almost 20 years at CSX Corporation, a Fortune 250 rail transportation company headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida.

During his long tenure at CSX, Lonegro served in a number of capacities, including Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer from 2015 to 2019, as well as key technology and operational roles earlier in his tenure, including President of CSX Technology, Vice President of Service Design, and Vice President of Mechanical.

“Landstar has greatly benefited from Jim’s many contributions over an almost 30-year career with the Company,” said David Bannister, Landstar’s longest-serving Board member and Chair of the Compensation Committee. “His passion for the independent business owners who make up the Landstar network has played an integral part in driving Landstar forward as a technology-driven industry leader. We wish Jim all the best in his retirement.”