COVID-19 Update


Last updated: May 27, 7:55 am EST

With the spread of COVID-19 in the United States and globally, many supply chains are disrupted, and businesses are worried about a further situation. PLS is giving an update on the latest legislation and general guidance on how to operate in the time of the pandemic.

Download our infographic: Coronavirus: Impact on Supply Chains and Logistics

How does COVID-19 affect logistics and transportation?

  • More than 75% of businesses say their supply chains have been disrupted by the coronavirus impact.
  • FMSCA exempts Hours of Services rules and other regulations to speed up trucking efficiency, which means the truck drivers will have fewer breaks and have to drive more hours.
  • President Trump has suspended all travel from Europe and the UK to the U.S. for 30 days. This does not include freight shipping, however, it will affect air freight, since more than 60% of air cargo is carried on passenger planes.
  • The U.S. has partially closed borders with Mexico and Canada for non-essential travel. This order does not affect freight shipping, commercial transportation, and trade.
  • New state orders are now in place, defining which business will remain operational and which will be forced to close during the pandemic.
  • The government has issued the Domestic Travel Advisory, which suggests recommended restrictions on internal travel for certain states. Read the full order here.

At what stage are states and businesses with the reopening?

As of the end of May, most of the US states have reopened. All of the states started to lift restriction measures, with people being allowed to go back to offices, restaurants, churches, etc. So many businesses have started to gradually reopen as well.

Check the state-by-state reopening status here

How do the travel restrictions affect freight shipping?

As of the end of May, many travel restrictions have been lifted, and some are still remaining in place. Check more about travel in the US here

There are no direct bans for international freight in the U.S. yet. On March, 11, President Trump announced the 30-day travel ban on trips from Europe and the UK, which is believed to greatly affect air freight. More than 60% of air cargo is carried on passenger planes, which can tighten air capacity.

Also, on March 20, the U.S. partly closed borders with Mexico and Canada, banning all non-essential travel for 30 days. This restriction does not include commercial transportation, freight shipping, and trade.

What restrictions are in place currently in the United States that affect businesses? Are the restrictions on a state by state basis?

Yes, state governors impose different safety and prevention measures. So far, several states have imposed restrictions regarding the operation of non-essential businesses.

Please see the updated list of imposed business restrictions:

Check Pennsylvania restrictions here

Check Philadelphia restrictions here

Check  California restrictions here

Check New York restrictions here

Check Illinois restrictions here

Check Connecticut restrictions here

Check Louisiana restrictions here

Check New Mexico restrictions here

Check West Virginia restrictions here

Check Washington restrictions here

Check Delaware restrictions here

Check Hawaii restrictions here

Check Indiana restrictions here

Check Massachusetts restrictions here

Check Michigan restrictions here

Check New Jersey restrictions here

Check Ohio restrictions here

Check Oregon restrictions here

Check Maryland restrictions here

Check Nevada restrictions here

Check Kentucky restrictions here

Check Alaska restrictions here

Check Georgia restrictions here

Check Kansas restrictions here

Check Wisconsin restrictions here

Check Oklahoma restrictions here

Check Colorado restrictions here

Check Idaho restrictions here

Check Minnesota restrictions here

Check Vermont restrictions here

Check New Hampshire restrictions here

Check Alaska restrictions here

Check Montana restrictions here

Check North Carolina restrictions here

Check Rhode Island restrictions here

Check Arizona restrictions here

Check District of Columbia restrictions here

Check Florida restrictions here

Check Maine restrictions here

Check Tennessee restrictions here

Check Texas restrictions here

Check Alabama restrictions here

Check Mississippi restrictions here

Check Virginia restrictions here

Check South Carolina restrictions here

How is COVID-19 affecting trucking companies?

Trucking companies will mostly be affected by FMCSA HOS rules exemption and state restrictions regarding the operations of businesses. There are no restrictions regarding trucking. However, 24% drop in freight movement was reported on the US – Canada border.

Read more: How Does Coronavirus Impact Global Supply Chains

What happens if I ship to a non-essential business in the affected states?

If you are preparing to ship goods, contact your carrier or shipping provider to receive information on the restrictions in the particular state. However, if anything changes while the shipment is already in transit, there are two outcomes. Once the carrier receives your shipment and realizes that the receiver business is in the affected state, she/he will be forced either to issue the return to the origin or keep the shipment in the warehouse. If this happens to you, please reach out to your PLS representative for more information.

If the customer was open when the shipment was picked up, and closed now, do they still get their delivery?

We advise to reach out directly to your customer or contact your PLS rep for more information. By default, if the customer is closed, the shipment will be sent back to the origin or a nearby warehouse.

Are the borders closing?

On March 20, the Trump administration announced that the U.S. is closing borders with Mexico and Canada for non-essential travel for 30 days. Essential business travel, trade, and commercial transportation are not included in the cross-border travel restrictions.

Are there any restrictions or delays for shipments going to/from Canada and Mexico?

Commercial transportation (freight shipping, in particular), and trade do not fall under the travel suspending order between the U.S., Mexico, and Canada.

How to stay safe and keep operating?

  • Arrange work-from-home for everyone possible in your company
  • Cancel and prohibit all travel for employees, and implement self-isolation for those returning from trips
  • Increase cleaning and disinfecting measures in your offices, facilities, and warehouses
  • Provide your employees who are on duty with required protective supplies: sanitizers, masks, gloves, disinfecting wipes, etc.
  • Implement a strict health and safety policy within your company

For more detailed instructions, see the WHO guide on COVID-19

Coronavirus: A Note For Our Shippers and Carriers

Our company wants to assure you that we are operating with increased safety measures through the time of Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

PLS is working hard to deliver freight in these conditions. Our top concern is the health and welfare of our employees, carriers, and customers and in supporting the community.

With the global emergence of COVID-19, we are focusing on our employee health and operations for our customers. To mitigate risks, we have implemented employees to work from home in all of our 11 offices nationwide. Our teams can still serve your business need at the highest level without any operational disruptions.

We have also increased the frequency of cleaning and disinfecting each of our offices company-wide, following government standards to limit the spread of the virus.

We continue to monitor any development and impact of the virus on the industry and will keep you updated with all the latest information. All of PLS offices continue to operate, and we will continue to serve all of your supply chain and transportation needs without any disturbance.

Contact a Freight Specialist
724.741.6500 – Cranberry Township, PA
469-513-4900 – Houston, TX
904.435.9500 – Jacksonville, FL
469-513-4900 – Dallas, TX
813.739.8199 – Tampa, FL
724.814.8877 – Pittsburgh, PA
623.277.4500 – Phoenix, AZ
314.768.9400 – Saint Louis, MO
980.242.4450 – Charlotte, NC
215.309.7640 – Philadelphia, PA
724.814.5142 – Chicago, IL

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