The stories continue to pour in as the dust settles from the catastrophic tragedy, and it’s no surprise that trucking company owners located in the areas hit opened their resources as needed. In Washington D.C., the Pentagon sent out a call, and Deaton Inc.’s Maryland office responded by sending trucks filled with construction supplies and truckers to transport the materials.
Mike Riley, president of Connecticut’s Motor Transport Association said a request for 500 pallets to be used in relief operations was filled within 30 minutes by members.
Ryder donated 150 reefers located in the New York City, Washington D.C. and Pittsburgh areas. Lisa Brumfield, Ryder’s communications manager said the reefers were used as temporary morgues and to ferry blood and tissues.
New Jersey’s Wakefern Food Corp’s spokeswoman Karen Meleta said they provided 20 reefers and trailers full of supplies.
These are just a few examples of the immediate and immense trucking industry response. None of which comes as any surprise to those of us in the industry. Truckers, for all their bad raps, usually do what needs to be done.
What they did on September 11 and the weeks following was simple and to the point. They answered the call for help. As this issue of CCJ goes to the printer, there’s so much uncertainty in the air, and one question seems to be on everyone’s mind: What should be done now?
The answer seems to be: move freight and keep your company afloat. The president of the United States has said, the best way to show your patriotism is to get back to work. The president of my company, Mike Reilly, has asked us to work harder and to continue doing what we do best. As a Commander in the Naval Reserves, I don’t know what’s ahead for me. I have my bags packed, and I’m ready for a call that may or may not come. But – I’m not sitting around waiting. I’m doing my job like I’ve always done it, to the best of my ability.
I’ve asked my employees to stay the course and to work harder. By keeping the economy going, we make the statement that we will not be disrupted.
Not all of us were called to haul in supplies or work in relief efforts. But all of us can do our part by keeping our businesses profitable, running and ready for whatever we are called to do next.
God Bless America from the staff of CCJ.
Chip Magner is publisher of Commercial Carrier Journal. E-mail Lmagner@eTrucker.com.