OOIDA pushes back hard against truck stop ban near Snoqualmie Pass

By Tyson Fisher, Land Line staff writer | 1/22/2016

As the city council in North Bend, Wash., nears the public hearing over a ban on creating new truck parking spaces, the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association has thrown its weight behind truckers opposed to the ban.

In a letter sent to North Bend’s Community and Economic Development Department director, Washington Governor Jay Inslee and Washington State Department of Transportation Secretary Lynn Peterson, OOIDA Director of State Legislative Affairs Mike Matousek expressed opposition to the proposal to municipal code that would prohibit new truck parking spaces, including any expansions to the lone truck stop in town.

On behalf of North Bend residents and OOIDA Members Carl and Joyce Hibma, OOIDA urged the city to reject the proposal. The sternly worded letter addresses the need for and importance of trucks in North Bend.

“Are trucks so unsightly that you’re willing to risk public safety?” the letter reads. “Perhaps you might look at them a little differently if businesses in North Bend were no longer able to receive goods to stock their shelves.”

The TravelCenters of America location off of Interstate 90 in North Bend is the only commercial truck travel center for miles, with truckers finding themselves in a precarious position when the mountain pass is closed because of inclement weather or crashes.

Joyce Hibma expressed concern for truckers when the mountain pass shuts down. According to Hibma, “No Truck Parking” signs are displayed throughout the town, leaving the truckers nowhere to go for provisions or parking while waiting for the pass to open.

With the nearest truck stop approximately one hour away in either direction on I-90 from North Bend, truckers can find themselves in a predicament when Snoqualmie Pass is shut down. With no parking available, truckers are lined up on the side of the interstate with no other recourse.

OOIDA Member Joyce Himba shares this video of stranded trucks.

North Bend’s public hearing on the proposed amendments is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 28, at the City Hall Conference Room located at 211 Main Avenue North. Written comments will be accepted up until 4:30 p.m. on that day. Comments can be emailed to Gina Estep of the Community and Economic Development Department at GEstep@NorthBendWA.gov.

Related stories:
City at 'pivotal point' near Snoqualmie shuns increasing truck parking

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