U.S. Transportation (DOT) Secretary Norman Y. Mineta met with truckers during the annual “Trucker Appreciation Days” event hosted by Landstar Systems Inc. to praise their performance responding to recent Gulf Coast hurricanes.
DOT delivered more than 15,000 truckloads of food, water, ice, cots and other emergency supplies to the region with the assistance of Landstar.
“When Katrina’s flood waters rose…you fired up your engines, fastened your safety belts and headed directly to the devastation,” Mineta said. “Thousands of lives were saved because you, our hurricane heroes, were willing to help your fellow citizens.”
Mineta noted that many drivers worked “long days and even longer nights” and recounted stories of truckers using their own money to buy diapers, carrying cases of water for elderly evacuees, and turning their trucks into shelters. He promised to make sure Americans never forget “the acts of kindness and compassion performed by truckers during the crisis.
Landstar has held a contract with DOT’s Federal Aviation Administration to provide transportation support during national emergencies since 2002.
“Everyone at Landstar pulled together and did an outstanding job in the midst of a huge national crisis,” said Landstar president & CEO Henry Gerkens.