Efficiency gets UPS through holiday rush - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Efficiency gets UPS through holiday rush

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December 18, 2007

Albany-  UPS usually delivers about 15 million packages a day, but that swells to 22 million during the holidays.

The company's busiest day is yet to come. In the rush, UPS is trying to make sure they're being as efficient as possible.

The holiday rush is on and like Linda Groarke many families are feeling the pinch.

"Hurry up, we're going to be late," said Groarke.

The daily challenge to get 12 year old Matthew, 11 year old Jackie, and four year old Sean ready and out the door on time is compounded by the additional holiday errands that took Linda to school, Albany Tech, and back to the school. It's hard to be efficient.

"I have to figure out for dinner tonight so I may have to run to Publics also, then I pick the kids up at one o'clock because its an early dismissal day and then I'll drop the boys off back at home then I go to the girl scout Christmas party," said Groarke.

For UPS, efficiency is a must.

"When this company is delivering 250 packages a second during Christmas time, you have to know exactly where your packages are," said Kyle Stabler, UPS Communications.

That's why every package is labeled, scanned, put in a specific truck, in a specific order, to make the most efficient route. It means designing routes with no left turns.

"When you're making left hand turn, when you think about it, what are you doing? You're sitting there, you're wasting fuel," said Stabler.

When there's a rush, it's all hands on deck.

"Sometimes my husband and I split it, okay well, I'll drop him off you pick her up so, it gets really crazy," said Groarke.

UPS is no different, adding seasonal helpers, with golf carts in communities like Doublegate to double the work.

"The driver will put off probably 50 to 60 stops for the helper to deliver independently, to help the driver move on and make another 50 stops at the same time," said Stabler.

As the seconds tick towards Christmas, the Groarke's hope being more efficient will get their holiday errands done. It's a lesson UPS knows all too well, because Santa never misses a deadline.

Wednesday will be the busiest delivery day for UPS and many other delivery services.

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