• 66°

COVID-19 affects local trucking company

NATCHEZ — The COVID-19 pandemic is hitting nearly every facet of the national economy, including some trucking companies that transport materials.

Jordan Carriers, a trucking company located on U.S. 61 in Natchez, is one of the many local businesses that has had to cut back on its services during the COVID-19 outbreak, owner Doug Jordan said.

Jordan Carriers started in 1992 and hauls general, flatbed building materials for manufacturing and construction companies, Jordan said.

Jordan Carriers’ more than 600 trucks travel through states east of I-35 from San Antonio, Texas, and north to Minnesota and everywhere in between, Jordan said.

“(Business) is steadily declining,” Jordan said. “We’re looking at a very bad second quarter and hopefully things will start to pick up after that. With everyone sick at home, we have a lot of customers and plants that are shut down because of lack of demand. … A lot of plants have cut hours and cut shifts. … The steel industry has gone from this time last year running at 88% capacity to last week running at 62%.”

Jordan said Jordan Carriers has more than 700 employees, including drivers and office workers, who are all still working but are either working from home or have fewer driving miles.

“We’re providing our transportation service at a lot lower cost to keep the trucks on the road,” Jordan said, adding drivers are instructed to use caution when making stops, are told to preplan their meals so they make fewer pit stops on the road and are provided masks sanitizers, and gloves.

“We educate our drivers to the best of our ability on how to practice social distancing, how to handle themselves at truck stops and how to preplan their meals and take food with them,” Jordan said. “So far we have zero employees that have contracted the virus. Every industry that I’ve talked to has definitely been negatively impacted. It’s an unprecedented time and no one can really say what is going to happen. There is a lot of uncertainty. … Hopefully all of this will go away soon and everyone can get back to work.”