Recent run of bad weather provides delivery challenges

I want to take this opportunity to thank Mining Journal subscribers for their patience during this stretch of bad weather we have been having. Delivery at times has been very challenging.

Our carriers are all independent contractors, so it is up to them whether or not they deliver in poor weather conditions. We always ask them to do their best to deliver the newspapers even in bad weather, but we won’t make them risk their lives and well-being by delivering in bad weather.

Most of our carriers do their best to deliver on a timely basis. Recently, when the U.S. Postal Service did not deliver several days because of the weather, many of our carriers did their routes just like normal. One of our carriers, Todd Honch, who recently passed away, went out and delivered his route on a Wednesday when the U.S. Postal Service did not deliver.

He came home after doing his route and said to his mom and dad that the postal service did not deliver on that day, but he did his routes. Todd was proud of the fact that he did not let the weather impact delivery of the newspaper to his customers. Other carriers also delivered in the bad weather and their customers also received the paper even when the mail was not delivered.

Every year, we have challenging weather conditions a couple of days a year. This year has been the worst series of bad weather days that I remember as publisher of The Mining Journal in the 27 years I have been here. I know some customers are frustrated when they don’t receive the newspaper because of bad weather, but I want all of you to know that we do our very best to put out a newspaper 362 days a year and deliver it to your homes. We don’t close our business because of bad weather. We have a dedicated group of employees that make it to work even in the worst conditions to make sure we publish a paper every day. We then hand the newspaper over to our carriers and ask them to make sure they deliver the paper to their customers. The majority of the times with the weather permittable, the delivery is done well.

Last Sunday was the first time this year I did not receive a paper at home. When I went out to clean the driveway on Sunday afternoon I realized why I didn’t get a newspaper. The snow in the road, which was not plowed, was well over a foot deep so I realized my carrier even with a four-wheel drive would have gotten stuck in the unplowed road if he tried to deliver. Carriers prefer to deliver daily because having to deliver two papers on one day is much harder work and takes more time.

Even though this year has been very challenging for the carriers, we hope their customers realize for the most part that their carriers are working hard to get the newspaper to them. I also hope you remember the carriers that do a great job deserve to get a nice tip. They work 362 days a year to deliver the newspaper to your home and they very much appreciate it when customers recognize their hard work.

The next time bad weather hits, please be reasonable with your expectations. If you are snowed in and unable to leave your home because of bad weather, there is a chance that you may not get delivery that day.

I also realize that in some cases there are other delivery problems, like car breakdowns on motor routes, which cause delivery to be delayed or on occasion not being delivered. When that happens this time of year on top of the bad weather, our customers’ patience is running thin. If you are having delivery problems and it is not weather-related, we still want you to contact us and we will do our best to take care of any problems you may be having.

Once again, I want to thank our loyal subscribers for purchasing the newspaper and for being patient during this bad stretch of weather. I also want to thank our newspaper carriers for their dedication in delivering to their customers 362 days a year.

Editor’s note: Jim Reevs is publisher of The Mining Journal.