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Protests, riots disrupt food and parcels delivery all over US amid covid-19 pains

DETROIT, MI - MAY 30: Protesters are held down during a night of clashes between protesters and Detroit Police Officers, violence returned to downtown Detroit as police made dozens of arrests and fired tear gas and rubber bullets at protesters on May 30, 2020 in Detroit, Michigan. The ongoing protests in Detroit come as a nationwide movement to protest the death of 46 year-old George Floyd at the hands of police in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Matthew Hatcher/Getty Images/AFP

Widespread protests are impacting food and package deliveries across the US.

Delivery companies are re-routing drivers around protests, cutting off deliveries after local curfews, and scaling back operations in response to the protests.

The changes are expected to cause package delays where protests are ongoing and curfews are imposed.

“We are monitoring the situation closely and in a handful of cities we’ve adjusted routes or scaled back typical delivery operations to ensure the safety of our teams,” said Amazon spokesperson Lena Runak.

A message sent to Miami-based Amazon Flex drivers, who deliver Amazon packages in their own vehicles, said drivers should “stop immediately and return home” if they are delivering packages after the city’s 10 p.m. curfew. The message also said Amazon closed some facilities and said drivers would be re-routed “to ensure that routes you take for deliveries are safe.”

In St. Louis, Missouri, a man was hit and killed by a FedEx truck that was caught in the midst of protests, NBC News reports . The incident reveals the potential danger of continuing to operations during widespread demonstrations.

“Our hearts go out to all those who are grieving the events of this week. We are deeply saddened to learn of a tragic situation involving a demonstrator in St. Louis and one of our vehicles. We offer our sincerest condolences to the family of the individual involved. There is no higher priority for FedEx than safety, and we are cooperating fully with the investigating authorities at this time,” FedEx said in a statement to NBC affiliate KSDK .

UPS has also taking extra measures in certain locations around the US.

“We are saddened to see that violence has impacted numerous cities and communities. UPS service continues, with the exception of some The UPS Store locations that will remain closed as we work with authorities. We cannot comment further while ongoing investigations are underway,” the company told Business Insider in a statement.

Curfews and protests curb high-demand food deliveries

Demand has surged amid the pandemic for food delivery services such as UberEats and GrubHub.

But some delivery services are now limiting operations as officials in cities across the US implement curfews some as early as 5 p.m. to try and inhibit evening protests.

Postmates, which delivers food, groceries, alcohol, and more, said it is abiding by curfew orders.

“While we respect the right to organize and make voices heard, trust and safety of our fleet, our merchants, and our customers are of paramount priority,” a spokesperson said. “We’re adhering to curfew orders around the country and are working directly with Mayoral administrations to balance our essential services designations with the curfew orders as each municipality has a distinct approach.”

A spokesperson for DoorDash, another food delivery company, said, “DoorDash is abiding by curfews across the country, and pausing operations as updates are made available.”

Some curfew measures have made exceptions for people to operate local businesses or obtain food, but didn’t specifically address food delivery services, which spurred some confusion about whether deliveries could continue.

Even in areas where delivery services appeared to be operating, some customers reported finding few restaurants in operation.

GrubHub and UberEats did not immediately respond to requests for comment.



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