I want to start out, by giving some credit where it is actually due. When this news actually broke, some news Websites mistakenly gave all the credit for this to an organization who may have had something to do with it but, did not have everything to do with getting this law changed.
The REAL credit here deserves to go to Fred (SilverSurfer_TX on twitter) and his brother JB Schaffner from The American Driver, they were very instrumental in getting this law lifted. Fred, has been working on this for a LONG time, besides working as a carpenter during the day.
He would tirelessly come in from work and jump on the phones, write letters, or get on Internet radio programs and try and get the word out. JB, while still driving a tractor trailer everyday was constantly on the phones and Internet radio shows, getting the word spread. These two men have proven, if you stand up and speak out people will listen to you.
You can also catch these two on their weekly radio program, The Truck Stops Here from 8:00pm to 10:00pm CST, every Friday night. As they continue to Stand Up, and Speak Out!
As, a truck driver myself, I want to personally thank you two guys for what you did. Understand this, they were not the only two people working on this, but they did do most of the ground work, and laid it all out for others to join in and help. Just, to mention a few names, Allen and Donna Smith from Ask The Trucker and Allens Blog Talk Radio show, Trucker Desiree – from twitter, and OOIDA, and Damian - a_smart_union from Twitter, and the many, many more folks I have not mentioned here, Thank you all!
This has been a problem for years, in Virginia. But, solving the problem started March 2, 2009 with Fred making a post to their American Driver Discussion Forum. Fred, made several postings about this, and wrote several letters, and made countless number of phone calls. It has paid off with Virginia deciding to abide by the law and lifting the two hour parking limit on June 18, 2009. Truck drivers are federally mandated to drive 11 hours and then are required by Federal Law to take a minimun break in the sleeper berth of 10 hours, before they are able to drive again. Well, when this was first mentioned to the law makers, they said truck drivers could either plan their trips accordingly or, GET A ROOM at a motel/hotel. Planning the trips, is completely out of the question, because of traffic and shippers and receivers. If you do plan your trip, 99% of the time it will change ten times while en-route.
The “get a room” statement, I think was just a sarcastic joke, that Virginia Law makers put out. Because, I don’t know if you readers understand it or not. You, just can NOT park a 70+ foot tractor trailer, everywhere. The bad part of this whole mess was, these Virginia State Troopers are suppose to protect and save lives. But, instead were purposely going into the rest areas, and waking up tired truck drivers and forcing them to break the law and drive on down the road. Taking a risk of wrecking and killing a innocent family or themselves.
There are still parking issues, because Virginia has made it clear that they are closing 19 rest areas, many along I-81. Here is a video that was taken, by a truck driver and sent to Fred.
This is the reason that “Jason’s Law” is so important, so we can get something going to create additional parking and safer places for the truck drivers, and travelers out on the highways. Not only in Virginia, but throughout the United States where the problems exist.
Again, thank you, all of you, that are involved!
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