A lack of places for drivers to relieve themselves and to wash up are at a premium during the...

A lack of places for drivers to relieve themselves and to wash up are at a premium during the pandemic.

Photo: Bekah Koons

While many of us are cooped up at home wishing we could get out, going home isn't an option for many drivers. In a new two-part HDT Talks Trucking Special Report, host Jim Park introduces you to seven drivers who live on the front line of the battle with COVID-19. 

Part I looks at how COVID-19 affects drivers' daily activities and how they are adjusting to this new reality, while Part II looks at the emotional impact of COVID-19 on seven working truck drivers. 

In Part 1, hear drivers describe how they mix and mingle with shippers and receivers, other drivers at truck stops, and restaurant workers. They can't be certain they won't contract COVID-19, so stress and anxiety become part of everyday life. Many of them haven't seen a friend or family member since February. They make the best out of living in 8-foot by 8-foot boxes, eating take-out food, and searching for clean washrooms.

Part II continues the discussion, as the drivers discuss the steps they take to stay COVID-free and talk about how their companies are supporting them through the crisis. They share their fears about bringing the virus home, and how they deal with the isolation and loneliness brought on by social distancing. While the threat of contracting COVID-19 weighs heavy, they also worry about the health of the economy and their own financial well-being. They say it's a fine line between a healthy economy and a healthy population.

The HDT Talks Trucking podcast debuted in January. Season two dropped on April 1, featuring topics such as self-driving trucks, electric trucks, trucking's new generation of leaders, reducing unscheduled downtime and more. This two-part special report is the first in a series of special report podcast episodes devoted to the COVID-19 pandemic. The podcast is available at www.truckinginfo.com/podcasts or on all major podcast platforms.

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