August 17, 2023

Washington law gives truckers bathroom access; will slobs ruin it?


Welcome to the WHAT THE TRUCK?!? Newsletter presented by AIT. In this issue, a trucker bathroom law could become a national model; a trucking bloodbath blood clot; expensive rest stop food; and more.

Washington trucker bathroom law goes into effect


“These type of things piss me off, we’re human beings. We’re people. The fact that people have to fight for a law that people can use a restroom?” Alex Mai from Mutha Trucker News on WTT

A damn shame Washington truckers are breathing a sigh of relief as SHB 1457 has gone into effect, guaranteeing bathroom access whenever drivers are making a delivery or picking up a shipment in the state. Now KING5 reports, “The state’s trucking association says the law is being used as a model in Washington, D.C., to perhaps guarantee that right nationwide.”

“Sometimes you go, ‘I’ll wait till the next rest area,’ and then you get 2 miles from it … and it says, ‘Rest area closed.’ That’s when panic sets in,” trucker Tilden Curl told KING5.


Will slobs keep it from going national? — While most drivers are obviously empathetic over the need for bathroom access, many are torn on whether the government should have the authority to force private businesses to allow them access. 

Why? A lot of drivers recognize that too many of their fellow kings and queens of the road leave bathrooms and parking lots a mess. 

Reddit’s truck driver forum r/Truckers sounded off:

ThrowedOff I’m surprised you can hear the “sound effects” considering how many drivers like to talk really loudly on their Bluetooth headsets while inside the restroom.

Status_Term_4451 — And why can you never flush? Why does it look like every driver just had a pork and beans sandwich with a side of corn every time I go into the stall?

Imaginativested Once seen a guy that was naked soaped up with hand soap and two sinks full of water and a cup giving himself a damn shower and every time he would dump the cup over his head would scream, “Whoooee, yeah.” Not sure if he was a driver or not but he sure was making us all look bad either way.

Sound off! Do you think Washington’s bathroom law should be a national model or is there a valid reason to deny truckers bathroom access? Email me your answer.

Truck stop inflation!


Have you seen the prices at truck stops? — Truck stops may not offer five-star resorts but they do offer five-star resort restaurant pricing.

4-mile oatmeal — With the national dry van spot rate average at $2.23, you’d have to drive 4 miles in this market to pay for a bowl of oatmeal at $8.99. Want some steak and eggs? Sorry, driver, that’s 8 miles! Just make sure you save enough for fuel.

Bloodbath blood clot


Overcapacity — According to Reliance Partners’ Thom Albrecht, “50,000 fleets have ceased operations since May of 2022.” Combine that with the loss of Yellow and you’d think we’d be ready for a market flip back in the carriers favor. However, pandemic war chests may have grown enough that more carriers are hanging on than anticipated.


“I underestimated the resiliency of them being able to survive below their operating costs for as long as they have but I think those days are over.” Derek Leathers, chairman and CEO of Werner

A year ago, FreightWaves CEO and founder Craig Fuller warned of this capacity glut and what would happen in the market if volume collapses. “If ‘demand falls back to pre-pandemic levels’ turns out to be true, the situation for truckers will actually be much worse than even I have predicted.” 

Leathers did offer a glimmer of hope. He said that most of Werner’s customers have indicated they expect a “normal replenishment cycle” moving forward.

Chattanooga Inc.

Freight Alley lands 14 on Inc. 5000 A slumping freight market can’t keep the Scenic City down as 14 logistics companies have made the Inc. 5000. That’s 25% growth since 2022. Steam took the top spot in Chattanooga, Tennessee, at No. 260.

The Chattanooga Times Free Press reported, “FreightWaves, a software and media company covering logistics that was started in 2016 and is headed by Craig Fuller, is 2,386 on the list with a growth rate of 231%.”

Want to see for yourself? Come join us at our F3 event in Chattanooga Nov. 7-9! Register for the event here.

WTT Friday

Who is paying for Yellow’s bankruptcy? On Friday’s episode of WHAT THE TRUCK?!?, I’m talking to industry consultant Bart De Muynck about the fallout from Yellow’s bankruptcy and what it means for the industry. We’ll also look at other recent bankruptcies and what they say about the health of transportation. 

Highway Angel Jon Adam recently saved four motorists who got into a wreck. He stops by to tell the story of what got him the honor. 

OOIDA’s Lewie Pugh talks about speed limiters, broker transparency and how the trucking parking problem led to a Greyhound bus crash. 

Motive’s Hamish Woodrow breaks down the freight recession, truck visits to retail warehouses, carrier exits and more from the month of July.

Plus, news, weirdness and much more.  

Catch new shows live at noon ET Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays on FreightWaves LinkedIn, Facebook or YouTube or on demand by looking up WHAT THE TRUCK?!? on your favorite podcast player.

Now on demand

Truck visits down at Target; truck parking solutions; and warehouse tech

State of LTL in a post-Yellow world

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Don’t be a stranger,



The second annual F3: Future of Freight Festival will be held in Chattanooga, “The Scenic City,” this November. F3 combines innovation and entertainment — featuring live demos, industry experts discussing freight market trends for 2024, afternoon networking events, and Grammy Award-winning musicians performing in the evenings amidst the cool Appalachian fall weather.

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