Trucking Group Wants Emergency Action on Truckers’ Right to Carry Across State Lines

Washington D.C. – A trucking group sent an emergency request to the United States Department of Transportation (DOT) on Friday urging leaders to take immediate action to help interstate truckers better protect themselves.

The Small Business in Transportation Coalition (SBTC) says urgent action is needed to ease restrictive state and local gun laws amid the unprecedented statewide orders arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.

On Thursday, California’s governor, Gavin Newsom, ordered all non-essential businesses to shut down and all non-essential travel to be restricted under threat of civil penalties.


The “stay at home” order came only hours before New York governor Andrew Cuomo, on Friday, issued a similar order to residents and businesses in New York State.

“These provisions will be enforced,” Gov. Cuomo said during a news conference when making the announcement. “These are not helpful hints. This is not if you really want to be a great citizen. These are legal provisions. They will be enforced. There will be a civil fine and mandatory closure for any business that is not in compliance. Again, your actions can affect my health. That’s where we are.”

Also on Friday, Illinois governor J.B. Pritzker and Connecticut governor Ned Lamont joined the others in issuing similar orders.

Truckers are deemed “essential,” so deliveries will continue, but what about the safety of these drivers now operating in a much different and unknown environment?


Citing the statewide “stay at home” orders, the SBTC contends the safety of truckers is now being further jeopardized as the “crisis worsens.”


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In an emergency email sent to DOT secretary Elaine Chao, James Lamb, president of the SBTC, argues:

With four states now having issued stay at home orders causing metropolitan areas to now be desolate, and with cities like New York and Los Angeles releasing criminals from jails, now more than ever are there significant life threatening dangers to the men and women who drive trucks as America’s supply chain first responders.


The 15,000-member SBTC is calling on federal authorities to preempt state and local laws regarding the right to carry a firearm.

Therefore, in accordance with the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution, we hereby request the U.S. Department of Transportation please issue a preemption order nullifying any and all state and local laws that restrict truck drivers from carrying firearms across state lines throughout America in order to enable them to protect themselves and their cargo as they engage in interstate commerce.

As this is now a matter of life and death, please issue same forthwith.

“The SBTC through its TRUCKER LIVES MATTER campaign has sought the unfettered ability of drivers to carry firearms for self protection nationwide since its inception in 2014,” Lamb tells Transportation Nation Network (TNN).  “We have pointed to Department of Labor statistics that show the unusually high rates of murders on the road for workers in interstate transportation.”


Lamb says America’s leaders have a chance to step up and support truckers during this time of crisis.

“It is time for government to proclaim trucker lives do matter,” he stated.

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Photo courtesy of New York Truck Stop/Twitter/@nyctruckstop



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Comment (7)

  1. I agree, at least as a temporary measure. This is our lives at stake here. People know there is a good possibility that there is something of high value within the walls of that trailer. Even worse, the level of stupidity of individuals has risen and danger is at an all time high. I need to be able to get back home to my kids and husband in one piece. A little extra protection during this time is not out of the question.

  2. We should be allowed to carry all the time. In any state, as long as you have a permit to carry. There’s a lot of states that honor concealer carry permits from other States anyway. But this is a different type of matter that needs addressed quickly

  3. I’m not as concerned about carrying a gun as I am about measures to make sure I can still have access to proper sanitation. That’s the most important thing the government can do for me. Fast, priority response to my panic. Ensure I can have a decent immune response to whatever I come across by allowing me proper body care. How much defense do you really think I’ll have with a gun? Do you imagine me slinging a gun around in one hand while driving an 80000 pound vehicle? I need this kind of intensity about BATHROOMS AND SHOWERS. Dear God. Pig Pen with a gun

    1. While I do agree that sanitary facilities are very important and yes some drivers need to take better care of themselves, your comment about “slinging a gun around in one hand while driving an 80000 lb vehicke” is simply irrational and quite frankly infuriating. Those of us, myself included, who are responsible, licensed to carry firearm owners don’t ho around “slinging” our firearms around especially while we’re driving. And before you say it, yes I agree there are some irresponsible “gun toting” morons” out there that shouldn’t have a slingshot let alone a firearm. But they are few and far between. The majority of us, again myself included are trained, licensed to carry, former military who not only know the proper time to draw our weapon, but proper procedures in how to protect ourselves and those around us. Ok, so a firearm isn’t for you. But try not to insult my integrity while making your point.

  4. I’ve always thought as a driver that it should be allowed to carry firearms to protect yourself & load. Load is you’re responsibility so is your life. I do think you should have to have been trained in some way, military, law enforcement or a shooters conceal & carry at the very least. Especially at this time with a pandemic in our world. It’s dangerous out there for drivers these days.

  5. This country thinks that truck drivers do nothing but do down the road. But it’s not as easy as everyone thinks, we deal with more hazards than most people could only think about. And one major issue is safety, for those of us who have a permit to carry, to protect ourselves and not allowed to because some states don’t recognize our permits, or allow us to carry in there states is not right but they want their freight. They dont care about our safety. We have families who are expecting us to return home. But we get robbed, hurt,or even killed. I believe that our permits should be like our license to drive a semi, our driver’s license goes state to state, our permits should be the same.

  6. I agree with all the comments already posted . Yours too Karen! I can only add that for those thst are licenced it’s not just an issue of states recognizing other state’s c&c permits. The DOT prohibits firearms in CMVs. I support TNN in its effort to get these gun restrictions lifted during this pandemic. Its always been my belief we should always be able to carry. We drive a $100,000+ rig, $50,000+ trailer w I th a load that theives love to get their hands on if you haul HHG, and your not allowed to carry, and theives know this . Your an easy target and it doesnt make a lick if sence.


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