On Feb. 5, 2010, Penske Corporation and its family of companies, which includes Penske Truck Leasing, announced that it donated over $1 million worth of diesel-powered flatbed trucks to the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund.
"I'm pleased the Penske Corporation has stepped up to donate more than $1 million worth of trucks, which will be instrumental in mobilizing food and lifesaving supplies in Haiti," President Clinton said. "Their generous contribution is an example of what the private sector can do to help Haiti rebuild and recover from the massive earthquake, and I'm grateful for their leadership."
The earthquake that rocked the coast of Haiti killed or injured a devastating number of people. Even more were left in need of aid, making this one of the major humanitarian emergencies in the history of the Americas.
"The catastrophe that has struck Haiti is almost unimaginable," said Roger Penske, Chairman of Penske Corporation. "These trucks will assist in the humanitarian relief efforts in Haiti by facilitating the distribution of critical supplies that will help ease the suffering of the Haitian people."
A few days later, the first set of trucks were readying for shipment at G&G Shipping in Dania Beach, Fla.
The 40 diesel-powered, 22-foot, flatbed trucks were culled from Penske Truck Leasing's commercial rental fleet. The trucks are instrumental in mobilizing food and lifesaving supplies in Haiti. The first shipment of Penske trucks left on the Panamanian-based, Emerald Express, a 190-foot, landing craft style vessel.
The first shipment went off without a hitch but it was no easy task and required an immense amount of companywide teamwork, logistical coordination, customs and legal paperwork, and attention to detail to accomplish. The entire project was completed in less than a week.
Penske's leadership finalized the donation decision with Clinton Bush officials Monday, Feb 1. Due to the urgency of the need, units were pulled from every region and 10 areas across the U.S. All the required trucks arrived at the port by early Saturday morning, Feb. 6.
The Clinton Bush Haiti Foundation officials notified Penske on Feb. 19 that 32 of the 40 trucks donated arrived safely in Haiti. The remaining eight trucks arrived in Haiti on Feb. 25.
The World Food Program is currently using the trucks. The organization is part of the United Nations system and it is streaming humanitarian assistance into Haiti, by distributing food and critical supplies, opening up air, sea and land corridors, and rehabilitating emergency telecom systems.
The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund is working with and supporting the efforts of reputable 501(c)(3) nongovernmental and nonprofit organizations, and Presidents Clinton and Bush oversee the CBHF through their respective nonprofit organizations, the William J. Clinton Foundation and Communities Foundation of Texas. One hundred percent of donations made to the Clinton Foundation and the Communities Foundation of Texas go directly to relief efforts. For more information, visit www.clintonbushhaitifund.org.