According to a report from Breitbart, a trade organization of truck drivers is “extremely disappointed” in Pennsylvania officials for shutting down rest areas due to the coronavirus.
These areas are critical to drivers who play a vital role in keeping the country’s supply chain open, the report adds.
“We understand this decision was likely made in an effort to limit passenger vehicle movement, interaction among travelers, and the state’s administration and supervision of these facilities during an emergency declaration,” the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association said.
“However, rest areas are vitally important to truckers, who at this time are being heavily relied upon to transport critical supplies across the country.”
“Pennsylvania is a major contributor to the nation’s economy and its location between the Northeast region and markets in the South and Midwest means countless truckers move across the state each day,” the statement added.
“Many of these truckers rely on the state’s rest areas to do just that – rest!”
More from Breitbart:
Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced Monday that it was closing the areas as part of the state’s effort to prevent further spread of the deadly illness…
In response, PennDOT said rest areas on the Pennsylvania Turnpike will remain open, as will privately-owned truck stops.
“PennDOT’s rest areas are currently closed, but we are routinely evaluating our position relative to the effort to mitigate the impact of COVID-19,” PennDOT spokeswoman Alexis Campbell said in an email statement to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “We must also consider the ability of our contract cleaners to provide staffing adequate to maintain clean, safe and sanitary facilities within our rest areas while limiting the exposure risk to [commercial motor vehicle] drivers as well as staff.”
The Turnpike has closed all fast-food restaurants and indoor bathrooms at all 17 rest areas. However, gas stations will remain open and portable toilets will be installed outside the rest stop buildings.
Pennsylvania has 96 cases of the coronavirus as Tuesday, up 20 from the beginning of the week. The U.S. has 6,496 cases and 114 deaths, according to data via John Hopkins University.