Dayton-Ohio based Jet Express organized a bottled water drive to benefit the citizens of Flint, Michigan, collecting more than 20,000 bottles in only the first day.
Company president Kevin Burch grew up in Flint, and decided to start a campaign for the struggling burg, which has been plagued by water contamination. The drive was announced January 26 and had a full load of 40,000 bottles headed to Flint by the following Monday, according to this article at Trucking Info.
Burch noted they have a full load of bottles with the help of a donation from Barry Pottle of Pottles Transportation, a Bangor, Maine company, along with Nestle. The latter company announced a team effort including Walmart, Coca-Cola and PepsiCo to donate water that will meet the daily needs of more than 10,000 school children for the rest of the calendar year.
That constitutes 176 truckloads—up to 6.5 million bottles—to help with efforts to provide relief to the city.
Flint has received national attention for their water crisis. Their water supply has been tainted by dangerous levels of lead and other contaminants. Flint changed the source of its water supply from Lake Huron to the nearby Flint River. Polluted water eroded the city’s iron main pipes, causing the lead contamination, and water coming from the tanks cannot be safely used. Children are especially susceptible to lead poisoning and are in particular danger.
Many other trucking companies, including Dayton Freight Lines, Englewood Trucking, and truck dealer Rush International have also joined in, as well as several owner-operators who have agreed to donate their trucks and time to help deliver the goods.
This effort demonstrates some of the charitable spirit of the trucking industry, and the kindness of those in it. Other trucking carriers in the region may also consider making a donation of either bottles or their own vehicles and time.