NATSO Foundation Chair Heather Debaillie of Iowa 80 Group and NATSO Vice President of Public Affairs Tiffany Wlazlowski Neuman recently highlighted the many safety initiatives taking place within the truck stop and travel center industry at the recent Midwest Commercial Vehicle Safety Summit in Kansas City, MO.
Debaillie and Wlazlowski Neuman discussed truck parking, the industry’s longstanding human trafficking awareness program and the NATSO Foundation’s recent partnership with HAAS Alert, aimed at increasing safety for travel center roadside repair technicians.
The Midwest Commercial Vehicle Safety Summit brings together federal agencies, industry, enforcement, engineers, university researchers, insurance companies and nonprofits who have an interest in reducing the number and severity of commercial motor vehicle crashes with the goal of knowledge dissemination and networking.
Wlazlowski Neuman discussed NATSO’s support for the Truck Parking Safety Improvement Act, which would set aside $755 million for truck parking grants and prioritize those grant applications that demonstrate partnership with the private sector. The Truck Parking Safety Improvement Act has advanced out of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee but has not yet gone before the full House of Representatives. A Senate companion bill has not yet been considered by the subcommittee of jurisdiction.
On behalf of the NATSO Foundation, Debaillie and Wlazlowski Neuman also discussed the important role that HAAS Alerts can play in supporting state Move Over laws to protect roadside repair technicians and motorists. HAAS Alerts, which are placed in service vehicles, notify oncoming traffic to the presence of the service truck. They further urged state departments of transportation, law enforcement and safety personnel to encourage commercial fleets to tow out of service commercial trucks to a nearby repair facility rather than request repairs on the shoulder of the highway.
Debaillie detailed Iowa 80’s significant investments to ensure the safety of all commercial drivers who stop to meet their federal rest requirements. Iowa 80 provides nearly 900 truck parking spaces and has installed more than 220 cameras on site as well as exterior LED lighting that can be seen from a two-mile radius. Iowa 80 has adopted the NATSO Foundation anti-human trafficking training materials to ensure that employees are equipped to spot and report a potential incidence of human trafficking should they ever encounter it.
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