“46,000 avocados spilled on the highway! Holy guacamole! Grab the tortilla chips!!! ” meteorologist Jake Dunne tweeted about a truck carrying over 40,000 pounds of avocados that suddenly caught fire last December 2017. The accident caused thousands of avocados to spill along the Interstate 35 in Texas. Interestingly, it also prompted pun-filled tweets and news stories about guacamole and Millennials all over the internet.
That has been the trend lately. When truckloads of frozen pizza, ramen noodles, and chocolates spill on the highway, the internet rejoices. But, should highway spills be a laughing matter?
There’s nothing wrong about using a lighthearted or ironic tone to relay or react to news about spill incidents. But if it undermines the growing problems in the trucking industry, then it isn’t the best way to report the spills. Studies suggest that the trucking industry has been struggling with driver shortage for a few years now. This problem has led to an increase in novice drivers behind the wheel or in tired drivers on the road – two reasons for many fairly recent highway spill accidents. American Trucking Association’s Bob Costello admits that the driver shortage is a grave concern for the industry, the supply chain, and the economy at large.
Also, highway spills are no joke if these involve chemicals or hazardous materials. EnviroCareUSA.com notes that environmental waste management personnel must ensure the safety of those exposed to the spill. These accidents entail prompt and strategic cleanup efforts to make sure the road is safe for the motorists again.
So, is it bad that you’re laughing at these roadway disasters? To a certain degree, yes. But then again, in the spirit of memes and puns, you can turn this negative situation around with humor. Clever quips about pepperoni pies or kegs of beer spilled on the road could ignite the much-needed conversation about important concerns in the trucking industry — you just have to get serious about funny, sometimes.