Postal workers clocking overtime this Christmas

Published: Dec. 19, 2016 at 11:33 PM EST
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(12/19/16) - On the busiest mailing day of the year, a line of customers are grateful the Flint Township post office is open late, as they rush to get presents delivered to loved ones.

"I'm shipping Christmas items to my daughter and her family in Florida," customer Kimberly Cooper explained. "For those of us who work 'til 5 and have things to do afterwards, I love it that it's open later."

"Totally forgot until today and so I'm glad they're open late," customer Stephanie McMichael added.

To make sure each package arrives for Christmas, mail carriers like Don Singleton have been working nearly 10-hour shifts.

"Putting together all of the mail, sorting all of the packages, so I don't take as much time in the field," he said. "And then 6 hours out here delivering, and then when I get done delivering, I have to go to several businesses and pick up packages."

The usual, but there's more mail this time of year.

Singleton says putting mail in a mailbox takes about 8 seconds, walking boxes to the door adds a few minutes. But, even with millions of packages en route this week, Singleton says your mail will arrive on time.

"I can make that promise, yes," he said.

Even if the carriers have to work on Christmas...

"You will see package delivery on Friday, Saturday and Sunday - a lot of them, even Sunday morning. We're gonna have volunteers to go out and deliver packages to families that are still waiting on them," Singleton explained.

Because he tells ABC12 News it's part of the job and he enjoys it.

"My favorite part is people glad to see me, glad to get their mail, glad to get their packages and a great group of coworkers," Singleton said.

To help Singleton and the other carriers move quicker, he asks that you clear the slush from in front of your mailbox.

You're also asked to ...

- clearly write out each letter and number on the mailing label

- separate any batteries from toys you might be shipping

- make sure fragile and hollow items are stuffed or wrapped with newspaper to prevent them from breaking

- don't reuse boxes because they weaken each time and you don't want yours to fall apart

- always place a card inside your package with both the delivery and return address - just in case something happens to the mailing label