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50,000 Packages In Limbo At UPS Distribution Center

COMMERCE CITY, Colo. (CBS4) - Thousands of people in the metro area will open their presents a little late this year because the day started out with 50,000 packages in limbo at the United Parcel Service holding facility in Commerce City.

A lot of the packages are locked up in the warehouse Christmas Eve. Even though UPS managers came in Christmas Eve to work the customer service desk, more than a few customers may find their gifts are missing under the Christmas tree on Sunday.

The line would grow, so would the frustration.

"He said, 'If you haven't prearranged to have your stuff picked up, it will be another two hours.' So I said, 'Why didn't you tell me before I waited two hours in this line?' " Scarlett Crawford of Aurora said.

UPS managers tried to clear up customer confusion about where to pick up their packages. Employees kept ferrying some of the 50,000 undelivered packages from their warehouse hub nearby to the customer service building.

Some would get some of their gifts.

"I've got three of the four. The fourth I can wait until they deliver on Tuesday," Shannon Gallagher of Commerce City said. "I was planning on being here quite awhile and I think it's been four hours."

But as day turned into night, many would get nothing.

A supervisor explained customers needed to be holding a delivery notice that was stuck to their door.

"If your package was not attempted and you don't have one of these, we're not going to find your package," a supervisor said.

"They should've hired a whole lot more help," Larry Hill of Denver said.

UPS blamed Thursday's snowstorm. Their drivers have the option of avoiding slippery streets.

"The weather knocked us out of kilter," the supervisor said.

But customers, with their Christmas spirit now damaged, were not so willing to accept weather as an excuse.

"I got out in my truck and I went to work that day, so it's hard for me to believe a UPS truck can't make it through in this kind of weather; and before Christmas you'd think they'd make the extra effort," Rose McPhee of Denver said.

UPS says it'll start rolling out the trucks again on Tuesday.

Some UPS customers said the U.S. Postal Service and Fed-Ex had no problems delivering their packages these past few days.

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