“Things are running out because people are hoarding,” Sova told NBC News. “On behalf of American truckers, slow down, people. Just get enough for a few days for your family. Another truck is coming. We’re coming. The truckers are coming, people!”…

On top of the risks to their safety, truckers — the backbone of the nation’s shipping infrastructure — are being whipsawed economically. The coronavirus pandemic has hit the logistics industry like a hurricane draped across the entire country, leading to spikes in demand in every locality all at once. Suppliers and shippers have had to quickly pivot operations to deal with changed consumer behaviors, as all of a sudden many households are buying for several weeks at a time.

“When this [pandemic] started, capacity was sucked up by the big shippers,” said Ken Adamo, chief of analytics for DAT, an online freight marketplace. In early March, a surge of available truckers left the spot market, where short-term orders to pick up freight are made.