Louisiana Is First ‘RV Friendly’ State

Louisiana has become the first state to pass legislation authorizing special “RV Friendly”
icons on state highway signs. The law is designed to help RV travelers to more easily
locate establishments that cater to their needs.The RV Friendly markers — bright yellow
circles with crescent smiles under the letters “RV” — could appear on Louisiana highways
as early as this fall. Local businesses such as restaurants and gas stations will be able
to place the markers under their “Gas-Food-Lodging” highway signs, as long as they meet
state requirements, including large parking spaces, entrances, exits and overhang
clearances.

 

Louisiana State Representative M.J. “Mert” Smiley, a Republican who represents
Ascension and Livingston parishes in District 88, led the legislative effort after he
discovered some RVers had difficulties locating establishments that could accommodate their
vehicles. As a result, RV travelers now benefit from having this information clearly
displayed on Louisiana’s interstates and highways. Smiley believes that businesses in
Louisiana also will benefit, as RVers will be more likely to purchase gas, food and other
items in the state, rather than passing through to neighboring states.

 

RV travelers spend
substantial amounts of money on food, clothing, souvenirs and entertainment in the
communities that surround campgrounds. RV owners travel an average 28-35 days annually,
according to the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association. More than two-thirds of RVers
take spur-of-the-moment trips year round, using their vehicles to support a wide range of
recreational activities and interests. “As the popularity of RV travel continues to grow, I
felt it was important to address some of the basic access concerns that RVers have,” said
Smiley. “The law benefits both RVers and business owners as the RV Friendly markers will
help them to more easily connect with each other.”

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