December 24, 2008

More Christmas delays

"Still waiting for that Christmas package from Grandma to arrive?

It's on its way — really — but you'll need an extra dose of patience as delivery drivers and letter carriers battle the same snowy conditions and ice-covered hills that have turned commutes into crawls and side streets into skating rinks.

The worst winter weather in years means those holiday cards and presents may stay stuck, well, in the mail, until we start to thaw this weekend."

Full Seattle Times Story.

We haven't been able to deliver our full route for the past week. After days of snow and temperatures still below freezing, there are streets where it simply isn't safe to drive. There are several streets that haven't seen our truck in a week.

To avoid the risk of getting stuck, we haven't been driving down any of the cu-de-sacs on the route. This means we (me) need to run the packages up and down the street. Of course this slows us down tremendously, as does the times we do get stuck. The packages keep coming whether we can get to them or not, so there is quite a backlog. Planes have also had trouble landing, so there are even more packages on their way.

As I mentioned previously, as the backlog grows the organization goes out the window. And any number of times during the day we hit a frozen rut in the road, the truck rocks from side to side, and an avalanche of packages rains down. And we're set back another 15 minutes as we dig it all out.

Many anxious folks approached our truck today, hoping and praying that their package was there. Most all of them walked away disappointed. Many Christmas presents won't make it in time. Pretty crummy, but there isn't much we can do about it.

The season has been sent into overtime as has my part of it. Today was supposed to be my last day but since the weather has created such a backlog, we've been asked to stick around probably through next week. It has been quite the adventure but I am about ready for it to be over. These guys work too darn hard.

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