“My husband and I team up: he drives [the truck] nights and I drive days. We usually do about 4,200 miles a week but right now we’re lucky if we even get 3,000 miles and that’s between the two of us, so it’s ridiculous.

“The last three weeks [our company] has had a hard time getting us loads for the trip back. With everything closing, places can’t sell, and without selling, they’re not restocking. We’re looking at about half of what we normally do. I’m thinking it’s not gonna be back to even close to normal until at least the end of the summer.

“Honestly, the only thing saving my husband and I is that we don’t have kids at home anymore. Granted, I’m sending them money to help pay their bills because I have grandkids. What about all these people that have children at home? There are tons of truckers I know with kids at home.

“There’s a couple companies that wound up closing their doors for good because they’re small companies. I’m fortunate to work for a medium-sized company.

“We run mostly anything at all, from chips and water to medical supplies. We go anywhere from Jersey to South Florida over towards Texas and back up to Illinois. I used to do cross-country but not anymore and I thank God for that right now.

“Right after it was announced that they were closing non-essential businesses, it wasn’t bad at first because everyone was still in the questioning phase. But once things started shutting down, we couldn’t walk in a store or even get things to eat, which was bad
because we didn’t bring food. Ninety percent of the places we deliver to wouldn’t let us use the restroom. Sometimes we sat outside for three to five hours without having a bathroom. I know guys hauling tankers and they had to sleep in their truck because the hotels were closed. They don’t have a bunk since they run a day cab. It’s really uncomfortable.

“Everybody is essential as far as I’m concerned. If one section of our community fails, the whole community fails. You cannot just leave one section of the community out. We all have to work together.

“They need to open the state back up. Closing it down the way they did may have been great in the beginning but it’s really hurting the industry right now and a lot of people are not going to be able to open.

“The governor is unrealistic in his opinions. The way he’s running things is from his perspective and he has money and his family can do what they want. They can get away from this place. He’s not looking at it from our perspective and that’s where he’s supposed to be looking.

“My perspective is down in the trenches like everybody else. I’m just trying to make a living and take care of my family.”

Tammy Costello
Truck driver
Milledgeville, Illinois