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Today’s Pickup: Trucker helps drivers get masks as she recovers from suspected COVID-19

On road to recovery, Nicole Folz raises money to get more personal protective equipment in the hands of fellow truck drivers.

Canadian trucker Nicole Folz is raising money to get fellow drivers face masks as she recovers from a suspected COVID-19 infection.

Folz, 26, launched a GoFundMe campaign after hearing from drivers who read the FreightWaves article about her experience getting seriously ill while on the road. 

“I got a huge flood of messages. A lot of drivers say they don’t have masks,” Folz told FreightWaves from a quarantined hotel run by the Canadian government.

The campaign already met its initial goal of C$500, but is still taking donations. Tentatively, she plans to distribute masks at the Flying J Travel Center in Ayr, Ontario, just off Highway 401, Canada’s busiest cross-border freight corridor.

The surgical-style cotton masks will come in handy for use at the Canadian border. The Canada Border Services Agency recently began requiring that drivers wear face masks or face-coverings at the U.S.-Canada border under public health directive.

Health officials say that wearing face masks can help limit the spread of COVID-19.

“It’s much better than using a t-shirt or bandana,” she said.

Folz also reported that her own health has improved in recent days. Her fever is gone. She hopes to be discharged on Saturday, April 25, pending the results of pre-discharge COVID-19 tests.

Folz fell ill while on a cross-border less-than-truckload run between Ontario and the Carolinas almost two weeks ago. 

Did you know?

Total Quality Logistics has reportedly delayed the start state of about 200 new hires


“It’s a tough life, I know it was hard on my dad, and I want to make it a little easier for truck drivers right now.” 

– Missouri businessman Bob Mericle on opening a free parking lot for truckers along I-44 in Missouri

In other news:

Amazon warehouse workers to protest over coronavirus protections 

Workers in the e-commerce company’s U.S. warehouses plan to protest this week to seek protections from COVID-19. (CNBC)

Investment fund acquires Italian rail freight operator CFI

Infrastructure investment fund F2i SGR and the National Association of Insurance Companies have acquired a 92.5% stake in Italy’s third-largest rail freight operator, CFI. (Railway Gazette)

North Carolina towing company keeps booting trucks

A towing company has continued to put boots on parked trucks while arguing it provides an essential service. (Freight Broker Live)

project44 carrier onboarding process

Freight visibility provider project44 has enhanced its Network Management Center to improve the onboarding process for carriers. (FreightWaves)

Final thoughts:

Despite reaching its initial goal, Folz’s campaign will continue to accept donations and will buy additional masks as more money rolls in. 

Hammer down, everyone!


  1. “she recovers from a suspected COVID-19 infection.”

    Suspected? She was not tested? Funny, I know no one that has been tested, contracted the bug or much less died from this mystery disease, and I am right here in the hot zone a few miles from Detroit. I have asked countless folks I know if they know of anyone, not a one does! Hell, we are supposed to be busting at the seems with cases here, and not one person I have asked knows of anyone, and trust me, I am out a lot, and ask that question to complete strangers. A big fat ZERO!

    Now, back to Detroit, Detroit, the land of empty hospitals and no testing. One major hospital chain, just announced the lay off of 2500+ nurses, doctors and admin along with across the board pay cuts. The Detroit Medical Center is laying off folks wholesale too, along with closing 50 of their local Urgent Care offices across the area. Henry Ford, lay offs and furloughs… I thought we are in the middle of a pandemic? When I was in nursing, and we had training for this sort of stuff, as well as natural disasters and other atrocities, this is not how it is done. Close the hospitals? Seriously? You cannot make this sheet up.

    Me, I came back from ND to Michigan, as soon as we hit the Michigan UP my head lit up with allergies, it turned into a sinus infection and rolled to my upper chest… Call it Covid. upper respiratory system seized up, no temp, just could not breath. I called my doc, asked about Covid testing, just for fun, as I had all of the Covid symptoms other than a temp. Flat out no, and besides, she did not know where I could even be tested! LMAO!!! I asked for a Z-Pack, I was fine in a few hours, knocked that snout right out of my chest. So, can I now run around and say I had Covid? Would I now be suspected of having Covid? Seriously!

    I don’t believe any of this sheet, my lying eyes and ears tell me this is all BS. Yet the media tells me doctors are jumping off empty hospital roofs due to the “Pandemic”.

    Wash your hands, use common sense, get some fresh air and stop licking the door knobs, you will be fine.

  2. All drivers have to do in order to have a mask is to simply MAKE THEMSELVES A MASK !

    It’s rather simple . Take a piece of cloth and two elastics and voila !
    Check the net if you need a diagram(step by step picture process ) on how to make it !

    Scissors, cloth , and elastics , no need to to go through a funding for masks .

    Gees by the time they receive those so called funded masks while on the road , they have time to get infected 100 times over !

    In my humble opinion ………….

    1. But then again , what are they going to use to protect their eyes and ears ???

      R you gonna fund that too ?

      Yes my dear , a virus and bacteria can enter through your ear canal ! Funny nobody speaks about that .

      Oh well .

      Best of luck !

      1. Aside from my smart aleck replies due to my nature of fault finding , any effort you do to help another is quite Noble of you and is well appreciated .

        My sympathies for your pain , wishing you a quick recovery . On the bright side , you should be immune now !

        Best of luck in your career and thanks for your services !

Nate Tabak

Nate Tabak is a Toronto-based journalist and producer who covers cybersecurity and cross-border trucking and logistics for FreightWaves. He spent seven years reporting stories in the Balkans and Eastern Europe as a reporter, producer and editor based in Kosovo. He previously worked at newspapers in the San Francisco Bay Area, including the San Jose Mercury News. He graduated from UC Berkeley, where he studied the history of American policing. Contact Nate at