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Fargo truck driver says delivering supplies is challenging during pandemic

FARGO (KFGO) – Just like for many people, the daily routines of truck drivers have changed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Vern Thompson of Fargo has been a commercial truck driver for several years and currently hauls petroleum products from the North Dakota oil patch to Canada.  Thompson says that trying to find fuel, a shower and a place to sit down for a hot meal is a challenge because many truck stops remain closed.

“You have to figure out where you can go to fuel up and get the things that you need. It takes some planning before you start the day as to what you’re going to do and where you’re going to go” Thompson said.

“I’m brown bagging it all day long.  One of the things truck stops provide is a seating area to sit down for a hot meal.  It also gives you a break.  You can’t just go 24 hours a day. You’ve got to stop, get out of the truck and have a little time and space. That isn’t happening now.”

Thompson, a former state senator from Minnewaukan, N.D., says the recent collapse of oil prices caused by the pandemic has led to “thousands of lay-offs” in the Oil Patch.

“Trucking companies have shut down because of this. I don’t see any turnaround until the virus goes away, or oil prices come back up.”

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