TRANSPORT ISSUE RAISED: Truck drivers hope their industry is considered an essential service, so trucks are able to continue operating interstate after the Queensland border closes.
TRANSPORT ISSUE RAISED: Truck drivers hope their industry is considered an essential service, so trucks are able to continue operating interstate after the Queensland border closes.

'There is a good chance that we are going to catch it'

LINDSAY Transport truck driver Marvin Durrant said while continuing to operate across borders increased his and his colleagues' risk of contracting COVID19, it was a risk drivers had to take.

"We are constantly going into Sydney and there is a good chance that we are going to catch it," Mr Durrant said.

"You just have to be mentally fit to be doing what we are doing at the moment I think."

State borders are continuing to close, with the Queensland border to close from midnight on Wednesday to help contain the spread of coronavirus.

Australian Trucking Association chairman Geoff Crouch said the National Cabinet must continue to regard trucking as an essential industry in any plans for further business shutdowns.

"As the National Cabinet considers whether further shutdowns are necessary, the Prime Minister, premiers and chief ministers must ensure that trucking and its related industries continue to be regarded as essential."

Stanthorpe's Lindsay Transport depot manager Shane Wilkins said the company did not face any restrictions at the moment, and hoped the service was considered essential by the government.

"Travel has been cancelled for drivers with non-essential items, but we need to be considered essential," he said.

The company transports essential food items across Australia, and 66 staff and 22 trucks are based in Stanthorpe.

"It's forever changing hour by hour. We just have to continue to keep up with the high demand and take on whatever is thrown at us," Mr Wilkins said.

"We have 495 crosses of the border every day to deliver essential food supplies. Currently as it stands we are still there to cross the borders and it needs to stay that way."

Mr Durrant said health and safety measures were being implemented now, more than ever.

"We are taking the precautions that health authorities are telling us to take," he said.

"Shane is doing a great job at that and making sure all the trucks are getting disinfected and things like that.

"We just have to keep going, because if we stop then the whole place is just going to fall apart."

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