Dallas trucker

Trey Mothershed of Dallas stands in front of his truck on Wednesday evening at Love's Travel Stop in Chanute. Mothershed noted there seems to be more respect for truck drivers during the pandemic.

ERIC SPRUILL

While most of the world has come to a halt in the midst of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, life continues at an even more hectic pace for truck drivers across the country.

Much has been made about drivers being unable to get a warm meal, because they can’t go through the drive through at fast food joints. This has been the case for a few drivers at Love’s in Chanute.

In fact, Kevin Bland, of Woodward, Okla., said he received a $500 fine for parking at a Wendy’s for 10 minutes in Atlanta.

“Not much has changed, honestly. As truckers, we are kind of used to being treated like dirt, or looked down on,” Bland said. “But it has never stopped us from doing our job and we will continue to deliver as long as there are products that need to be shipped out.

“The main thing is just washing your hands. I love this place (Love’s). They keep it really clean here. They clean their pumps every 30 minutes or so, and I can always run in and get something warm to eat.”

Trey Mothershed, of Dallas, said he has found people to be friendlier since the COVID-19 outbreak. 

“I have definitely seen a change in the mentality that people have for this profession,” he said. “The other day I had some random person pass me on the way into a gas station that thanked me for the job that we do.”

Mothershed said the biggest thing he has noticed is the decrease in traffic in big cities. 

“It was crazy driving through Kansas City earlier; it was almost like a ghost town considering the time I was driving through there,” he said.

He said he noticed the same thing driving through Houston, Denver and other major cities, but said life seems to have gone unchanged in rural America.

Henry Biggs, of Louisiana, said people are not quite as social as they used to be when making his stops, which to him is a good thing considering the pandemic.

“Not a lot of people standing around talking or anything like that. But that is what needs to happen,” Biggs said. “I have been washing my hands like crazy and using a lot of hand sanitizer. I try not to use cash, because money is one of the dirtiest things.

“I heard people talking about how they were upset the casinos were all closing, and I was thinking those are the worst places to be in a time like this. All those people in one area, handling money, touching machines. I think we are taking the appropriate steps to get this contained.”

 

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