Covered by Fox affiliate KTVI in St.Louis, a mother of two living in Barnhart, Missouri was shocked to find out that the 7-inch Android tablet that she ordered for her daughter as a Christmas present was left inside a trash can by the UPS delivery driver. Upon arriving home from work, Tracey Sole discovered an official UPS InfoNotice note indicating that the driver left her daughter’s tablet inside a black trash can along the street. Unfortunately, the delivery also coincided with trash day at the Sole household. Sole believes that city maintenance workers must have emptied out the trash can, thus hauling away and crushing her child’s new tablet.
Sole believes that it’s unlikely that the driver would have been able to traverse her home’s steep driveway and ice could have also discouraged the driver from attempting to walk up to the door. However, leaving a package inside a trash can that’s sitting at the curb certainly isn’t the best location for a delivery.
Interestingly, UPS guidelines for package delivery encourage drivers to leave packages “out of sight and protected from inclement weather,” thus it’s possible that the driver thought the trash can was a good solution.
Commenting about the situation, Sole said “I was crying all night. I saved for months to get that for my daughter.” When Sole initially attempted to call UPS to resolve the issue, a representative for the delivery company told her that she would need to contact the retailer first. After calling the retailer, she was told an investigation would be launched and would likely take 8 to 10 days. She was also informed that the tablet was currently back-ordered and there was no guarantee that she would receive a replacement in time for Christmas day.
As mentioned in the comments of the KTVI coverage, the story does have a happy ending. A UPS representative contacted Sole, took full responsibility for the delivery incident and promised to order a replacement tablet that will be delivered in time for Christmas.
In order to avoid incidents like what happened to Tarcey Sole, UPS representatives recommend requiring a signature for special deliveries. UPS also offers a free program called My Choice that allows users to sign up for delivery notifications over text, voice and email. My Choice users can also look at a calendar to see all planned deliveries and set specific delivery instructions in order to direct a driver to a certain area of the home.
For instance, this tool can be used to direct the package to a neighbor’s home when on vacation. In addition, packages can be held at a UPS facility or delivered to a retail UPS location. UPS also offers a premium level of membership in My Choice ($40-a-year) that offers users unlimited reroutes and rescheduling as well as a specific 2-hour delivery window for your packages.
Of course, this isn’t the first time that UPS has gotten into trouble over the busy holiday season. Last year, a UPS delivery man was recorded stealing an iPad Mini from the doorstep of a Houston home just minutes after a Fedex drive dropped it off.