Shorepower pedestal installed in Lebec, Calif., on I-5 Corridor

Truck drivers can now drive the entire length of U.S. Interstate 5 between Seattle and San Diego and parallel State Route 99 in California and get restful sleep without idling the truck engine, running down batteries or firing up an APU.

Shorepower Technologies recently completed the installation of power pedestals and held a grand opening at the Pilot Flying J Travel Plaza in Frazier Park/Lebec, Calif. Interstate 5 through California, Oregon and Washington and parallel State Route 99 in the San Joaquin Valley now becomes the first interstate corridor in which truck drivers can use just shore power during rest periods to stay warm in the winter and cool in the summer, while also running all of their "hotel loads." 

Because it parallels Interstate 5, truckers often use portions of California State Route 99 near Bakersfield and Fresno and in southern San Joaquin County to avoid congestion on U.S. Interstate 5. State Route 99 also passes through the center of the San Joaquin Valley, one of the world's most productive agricultural regions.

The Pilot Flying J Travel Plaza in Lebec joins five other truckstops and travel centers equipped with Shorepower Technologies pedestals in California, three in Oregon and one in Washington. Lebec is 70 miles northwest of Los Angeles. Seven of the 10 Shorepower Technologies locations also provide connections to 480V power for hybrid-refrigerated trailers, (eTRU). The Shorepower Technologies locations join other truckstop electrification (TSE) sites along the I-5 corridor. See below for a complete listing.

"I-5 was the first of 10 interstate corridors targeted for increased availability of this anti-idling technology," said Alan Bates, vice president of marketing for Shorepower Technologies. "Now it becomes the first freight corridor in the nation where drivers can travel its entire length and get relief from high fuel bills and the noise and air pollution created by truck engines left running.

"Taking advantage of the growing network of electric plug-in power pedestals is one good way truck fleets and operators can pocket more of their profits instead of burning them with idling truck engines," Bates said.

Shorepower pedestals provide access to 120V, 208V or 240V power sources, at a rate of $1 per hour, with cable TV available at a number of locations.

The $1 an hour rate for shore power compares favorably to the $4 a gallon of diesel fuel it takes to idle a truck for an hour. In addition, idling a truck adds to wear on the engine, resulting in higher maintenance and repair expenses. And without the noise and emissions of trucks idling, drivers get more restful sleep, and the truck stop and nearby neighborhoods get a cleaner, quieter environment. 

There are more than 50 locations around the country that have been outfitted by Shorepower Technologies. Shorepower provided most of the electrical pedestals through the Department of Energy's Shorepower Truck Electrification Project (STEP) — administered through Cascade Sierra Solutions, a non-profit based in Eugene, Ore. Half of the 50 STEP sites also offer 480V power for refrigerated trailer units with electric standby capabilities.

"As travel times and vehicle emissions increase due to heavier traffic congestion on the I-5 corridor in the years to come, truck and fleet operators will be under ever-increasing financial, regulatory and societal pressure to reduce their engine idling significantly," Bates said. "That's why we believe use of these sites will continue to increase and drivers will demand the service at more locations."

According to the Federal Highway Administration, the I-5 corridor is more than 1,350 miles long with 550 miles traversing through urban areas. More than 65 percent of the 550 miles of urban segments along the 1-5 corridor is currently under heavy congestion. An average of nearly 10,000 trucks travel along the 1-5 corridor. During busier freight periods, there are more than 35,000 trucks hitting the road daily.

"When the highway administration declared the 1-5 corridor as one of the six interstate routes considered as corridors of the future in 2007, it projected average daily truck traffic would more than double to 22,000 by 2035 without further infrastructure improvements," Bates added. 

"Plus, 95 percent of I-5's urban segments will be under heavy congestion up from 65 percent," he said. "This means trips through urban areas will take much longer, extending the amount of time it takes for freight to move from point A to point B. This may require truck drivers to take additional rest stops when hauling freight up and down the I-5 corridor.

"These initial locations will allow us to demonstrate the value of shore power to more truck drivers and fleet operators," Bates said. "And increased usage of these sites will convince truckstop operators to add more pedestals to their locations as a way to appeal to truck fleets and operators and capture more of their business."

The TSE locations along the I-5 corridor are (from north to south – near Interstate 5 exits, unless otherwise noted):

  • Gee Cee's Truck Stop, Exit 57, 123 Foster Creek Rd., Toledo, Wash. 98591 — 24 plug-ins.
  • Jubitz Travel Center, Exit 307, 33 N.E. Middlefield Road, Portland, Ore. 97211 – 24 plug-ins. 
  • Truck 'N Travel/TA, Exit 199, 32910 E. Pearl St., Coburg, Ore. 97408 — 24 plug-ins.
  • Seven Feathers Truck and Travel, Exit 99, 130 Jeffreys Road, Canyonville, Ore. 97417 — 36 plug-ins and six 480V refrigeration unit connections.  
  • Pilot Travel Center, Exit 745, 395 E. Vista Dr., Weed, Calif. 96094 — 36 plug-ins and nine 480V refrigeration unit connections.  
  • Pilot Travel Center, County Road 8/Exit 554, 30035 County Road 8, Dunnigan, Calif. 95937 — 24 plug-ins and five 480V refrigeration unit connections.  
  • Sacramento 49er Travel Plaza, 2828 El Centro Road, Sacramento, Calif. 95833. This non-Shorepower Technologies TSE location is near the Interstate 80 and Interstate 5 interchange, Exit 522. 
  • Flying J Travel Plaza, Exit 485, 15100 N. Thornton Road, Lodi, Calif. 95242 — 36 plug-ins and five 480V refrigeration unit connections.  
  • Pilot Travel Center, 22717 Ave. 18 1Ž2 Suite A, Madera, Calif. 93637. This non-Shorepower Technologies TSE location is located near Exit 159 on California State Route 99 about 60 miles east of Exit 403 on Interstate 5. 
  • Love's Travel Stops, 1553 Colony Rd., Suite B, Ripon Calif. 95366. This non-Shorepower Technologies TSE location is 11 miles east of the Interstate 5 and Highway 120 interchange.
  • E-Z Trip Golden State, 6725 N. Golden State Blvd., Fresno, Calif. 93722 — 24 plug-ins and five 480V refrigeration unit connections. E-Z Trip Golden State is located near Exit 142/3 on California State Route 99, about 50 miles east of Exit 368 on Interstate 5. 
  • Flying J Travel Plaza – Bakersfield, 17047 Zachary Ave., Bakersfield, Calif. 93308 — 36 plug-ins and five 480V refrigeration unit connections. This Shorepower Technologies location is near Exit 39/Merced Avenue on California State Route 99, about 31 miles southeast of Exit 278/California 46 East/Paso Robles Highway on Interstate 5. 
  • Bruce's Truck Stop, 8401 E. Brundage Lane, Bakersfield, Calif. 93307. This non-Shorepower Technologies TSE location is 30 miles east of Exit 253 on Interstate 5. 
  • Flying J Travel Plaza, Exit 205, 42810 Frazier Mountain Park Road, Frazier Park/Lebec, Calif. 93243 — 24 plug-ins and five 480V refrigeration unit connections.