Truck stops were developed in the United States around the time there was a massive increase in infrastructure spending in conjunction with public works projects of the new deal. The truck stops were eventually grouped and supported by the organization truck stops of America. This organization changed its name to Travel centers.
The modern word for trucks stops is travel centers. These travel centers are spaced throughout the country, and are designed to have everything from food, gas, parking, a diner, showers, and often entertainment. They also have maintenance facilities for semi-trucks.
These truck stops (travel centers) are important because they help lower the risk of semi-truck accidents. How do they do this? They help provide the necessary basics to truck drivers: food, proper sleep, and proper maintenance.
Truck drivers spend a majority of their day driving, and therefore sitting. Long periods of sitting require proper nutrition to prevent certain types of health complications and medical conditions. The stereotype is that truckers are overweight and unhealthy. This is not often the case. Many truck drivers go out of their way to regularly exercise and eat properly. These truck stops provide proper food and nutrition that can help semi-truck drivers avoid eating only fast food, which can lead to high blood pressure, heart conditions and strokes. These conditions are dangerous because if a truck driver has a medical emergency while driving, everyone is at risk. These truck stop diners and food options will have enough that the truck driver can choose the proper food to eat.
Sleeping in the truck is always one way for semi-truck drivers to get sleep, but having a proper bed and sleeping facilities that are often offered at truck stops can do wonders for recovery. Proper sleep helps prevent sleep deprivation, sleep debt, and microsleep. All of these can pose a danger to truck drivers and other drivers on the road.
Proper maintenance for semi-trucks can be difficult when in between large cities. Sometimes semi-truck drivers need to wait until they have proper tools to do certain maintenance checks. These truck stops often will provide repair facilities that are above and beyond what is available to semi-truck drivers in more rural states.