Griffey legislation to open public rest areas unanimously passes the Senate

The Washington State Senate voted in favor of a bill from Rep. Dan Griffey that would expedite the reopening of safety rest areas throughout the state.

House Bill 1655 would make Washington roads safer by allowing all drivers to use safety rest areas. Commercial motor vehicle parking shortages are a national safety concern. The situation in Washington was exacerbated when state government ordered the closing of many state-owned and operated safety rest areas in the fall of 2021 due to the pandemic.

“I'm very pleased to see this legislation move closer to becoming law. We need to resolve this issue as soon as we can, make our roads safer, and save lives,” said Griffey, R-Allyn. “Our roadways have enough safety hazards already. We shouldn't have to worry about semi-trucks parked on the side of busy freeways and highways.”

House Bill 1655 would direct the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) to reconfigure its maintenance operations to assure state-owned and operated safety rest areas are open for use except for seasonal closures or cleaning, maintenance, and repairs.

It would also allow the WSDOT to initiate a strategic planning process that addresses the maintenance, operation, and safety of its owned and operated safety rest areas.

“We need to support our truck drivers by allowing them to park safely and rest as mandated by law,” added Griffey. “Opening these rest areas will keep our economy moving and prevent additional serious and fatal injuries. Let's get this signed into law.”

The 60-day legislative session is scheduled to end on March 10.


Washington State House Republican Communications