UPS delivers Christmas gift to trash can

Many of Santa's helpers wear brown. (AP Photo)

Many of Santa's helpers wear brown. (AP Photo)

The legendary productivity of Santa’s elven sweatshop is unmatched by regulated industry, but UPS and other delivery drivers certainly try.

But it can be a bit of an Easter Egg hunt to find where the UPS drivers leave packages during the busy holiday season.

Just the other day I was sipping some nog and wondering why the fancy computer doodad I’d ordered online had yet to deck my halls with boughs of jolly. I went to the NewEgg website and a note there said my order was “left on porch.”

Since I live in DeKalb, I assumed it had been pawned. But, after shuffling around some bags of leaves my wife keeps telling me to drag to the curb, I found the boxes.

A Missouri mom was not so lucky.

Tracey Sole told a local TV station she saved up to buy her daughter an Android tablet and was shocked to find a UPS notice in her mailbox saying the gift was deposited “in black trash can.”

The tablet, and her garbage, were both missing.

She believes both were taken to the same place — the dump.

“I was crying all night,” said Sole. “I saved for months to get that for my daughter.”

The company she ordered the tablet from said it would ship her another one, but it may not arrive in time for Christmas.

UPS said workers are trained to leave packages out of sight and protected from inclement weather, a practice called “driver release.”

I don’t recall ever losing a package from UPS or Fed Ex. That’s a pretty good batting average. And with the number of packages they have to deliver at Christmas, there’s no other way to get the job done until Google’s robot creatures or Amazon’s drones are ready.

At least I have an excuse for leaving those bags of leaves on the porch.

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27 comments Add your comment

Sick of This Propaganda Paper

December 17th, 2013
9:16 am

Coincidentally, that is also where I delivered my last couple of AJC subscription renewal notices.

Roekest

December 17th, 2013
9:42 am

Roekest

December 17th, 2013
9:44 am

Sorry, my “HA!” was in response to the REAL first comment that said something to the effect: The trash is coincidentally where I put my last 2 AJC renewal notices. I guess GM doesn’t like offbeat criticism in his offbeat column. Grinch.

jeffrey d

December 17th, 2013
9:49 am

You’re sick of the AJC? Better keep coming to AJC.com then.

George Mathis

December 17th, 2013
9:49 am

Nice try. I know you were really laughing at my lead.

Patrick

December 17th, 2013
10:10 am

Only time I recall having trouble with UPS is when I lived in an apartment complex. Depending on the driver, if you’re not home, he/she will leave it at the management office of the complex you live in. It’s a double-edged sword: On one hand, it was signed for, and left in a secure location; on the other hand, you won’t be able to get the package until you’re home at a time when the management office would be open, such as on a Saturday (when a lot of people would be paying their rent). When I signed up for DSL service with BellSouth, the equipment was sent to the management office, but I was never notified. I called Bell South and complained, thinking it never came. They sent me another one, and this time the driver left a note, stating the package was left at the management office. Fed-Ex once delivered something to me, and they did the same thing – left a note stating that it was at the office. I think on that one management even called my apartment and left a message on the answering machine.

xxx

December 17th, 2013
10:15 am

The last time I had trouble with UPS ,l I switched to FedEx.

Susan

December 17th, 2013
10:56 am

I don’t like UPS. That was not smart at all for the UPS man to just put somebody’s package in the trash can. I prefer Federal Express to deliver my items.

Don't Tread

December 17th, 2013
10:59 am

I understand the concept of “out of sight” to deter the theft that is rampant these days, but seriously…a trash can??!?

Someone needs a test….an IQ test and/or a drug test.

Milton

December 17th, 2013
11:31 am

You obviously grabbed this article from elsewhere and neglected to mention that UPS has already offered to replace the tablet.

Maybe the next time you copy from someone you’ll copy the entire article.

Woody

December 17th, 2013
11:44 am

A month ago, my sister inquired if I received her gift, since I hadn’t said anything about it. She had been notified that it had been delivered by UPS a week earlier. So, we looked around the house and, yep, found it by the trash can. It was a food product and had been sitting in the sun for a week. If someone wants to steal gifts, check around the trash cans.

Patrick

December 17th, 2013
11:51 am

With stories like this one, I think I’m going to start setting my work address as my delivery address. That way, someone is always available to sign for it, instead of it sitting out in view of God and everyone else.

St Nick

December 17th, 2013
12:10 pm

I sent my home-bound mother a gift from Macy’s that was delivered via UPS. The driver said left on porch. It was no where to be found. Her porch is out of view of passersby. It was small and she has a garage opening for mail. Which led us to believe the driver must have decided to just keep it.

Roekest

December 17th, 2013
12:26 pm

In all seriousness, UPS is much worse than FedEx. While I can’t exactly recall a package getting lost (maybe it happened once, a while ago), their service is awful. I understand and appreciate they are supposed to hide the package from visibility, but does that mean chucking it in the can, or as in my case, hiding it near the bushes by my garage where either my wife and I could run over it or just miss it completely? Yeah….I know how confusing that sounds, but imagine our confusion when a package is in the middle of the garage door or in the bush right next to it. It’s called a porch with bushes UPS

Full britches

December 17th, 2013
1:01 pm

Both UPS and FedEx do a fine job, in my experience. You will occasionally have the bad apple, but compared to the gross incompetence and indifference of the Post Office, they are rock stars.

Full britches

December 17th, 2013
1:05 pm

Since this is an AJC story, I am surprised there is no racial angle to the story as that is what seems to sell papers in Atlanta, the city of hate.

S

December 17th, 2013
1:40 pm

There is a simple solution for those of us lucky enough to have a job these days, have your packages sent to your place of employment.

Stupid is as Stupid does . . .

December 17th, 2013
2:00 pm

@Full britches, the race card only gets played by racists bloggers on AJC, not unlike yourself . . .

kristied

December 17th, 2013
2:34 pm

Concerning the mother who bought the tablet- if NewEgg is sending her another why is she saying it may not get here in time for Christmas? It is over a week until Christmas….plenty of time to get a package.

Lucky man

December 17th, 2013
2:44 pm

I remember the time the UPS man made a special delivery to me in the back of his truck. Talking about great service…

Kat

December 17th, 2013
4:24 pm

I have my packages sent to the home of a trusted friend, who has a better “setup” than I do for receiving packages. Plus, no one in our family knows what they are getting for the holiday.

Patrick

December 17th, 2013
5:01 pm

kristied – You have to take into account that NewEgg has tons of other orders to fill. The woman’s order will be filled in the order it is received by the warehouse where they pull, pack, and ship orders. Now, if the order is flagged as “rush” or something that will make it top priority, then it might be pushed ahead of the rest of the queue.

I don’t know how NewEgg’s warehouse operates, but I used to work in a warehouse that stocked a well-known national brand of tools. Orders would be submitted to the warehouse, and they’d be assigned in the order they were received, and whoever picked up the order first. We would scan it in on our little computers, and the computer would tell us where to pull the items needed for the order: a socket wrench here, screwdriver there, a mallet over there, you get the idea. We’d then pack the tools in a box, send it on to packing, who would finish up the packing, print the shipping label, and send it on to shipping, who would check the packages “out” and put them on the trucks to go out to all points of the globe.

It is that processing time that often results in the “6 to 8 weeks” line you might hear when ordering items, as to how long it takes to receive the item. Of course, this was back in 1999/2000, so things may have changed drastically since then.

Bumper

December 17th, 2013
5:34 pm

“I remember the time the UPS man made a special delivery to me in the back of his truck.”

One of the several practices UPS refers to as “driver release”.

PhilJ

December 17th, 2013
5:34 pm

Why not just have the package delivered to work? I do that with all my high-end packages, since no one is at home when they usually deliver stuff like this. If delivery falls on a Saturday, they usually re-delivery on the next Monday.

Bumper

December 17th, 2013
5:41 pm

Actually I’ve had the same UPS delivery guy for years and he has always been 100% friendly and reliable. Unfortunately he also tears through the neighborhood like a bat out of hell and he’s nearly mowed me down several times while I was running.

This is Mrs. Norman Maine

December 17th, 2013
8:05 pm

Just last week UPS claimed they left my package at my front door. Since I was t home at the time they claimed to have left the delivery and since I checked my front door only 15 minutes after they claimed they left, I have no choice but to think they left it at the wrong house. I realize now I should have checked my trash can.

d. j. Mase

December 17th, 2013
9:54 pm

Well face it people…. if ur neighborhoods were not so scandalous, and thuggish, then ur package would be left on ur porch…. try a neighborhood watch or move….