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Local companies beginning to sweat idea of potential UPS drivers' strike

340,000 UPS employees threatening to strike
340,000 UPS employees threatening to strike 02:06

NEW YORK -- A stalemate at the bargaining table could mean a summer shutdown of deliveries from UPS.

The 340,000 employees represented by the Teamsters are threatening to strike.

CBS New York has more on the possible impact on businesses and consumers.

READ MOREUPS workers edge closer to strike as union negotiations stall

Tony Russo's vast inventory has earned the owner of Aries Wine and Spirits a customer base well beyond White Plains.

"We ship throughout New York state and we rely on UPS," Russo said.

But there's a summer bummer on the horizon -- a possible strike that could shut down UPS operations.

"If we can't ship, obviously, it impacts, along with all the other things that impact the small business guy," Russo said.

UPS workers in Mount Vernon had a practice picket line Thursday morning. Teamsters say a key demand is improved pay for part-timers and the UPS offer is falling short.

At an informational picket in Des Moines, Iowa, workers pointed out UPS's adjusted net income has increased by more than 60% since 2019.

"We're all just here to get a little piece of the pie," employee Dillon Strait said.

Drivers average $42 per hour and need just 10 years on the job to qualify for pension benefits.

UPS is the country's biggest shipping company. Around 6% of the nation's GDP passes through its brown vans.

Nationwide, drivers deliver nearly 19 million packages every single day.

Nick Vyas, a professor at the University of Southern California, says consumers and manufacturers depend on UPS for critical deliveries.

When asked if even a brief strike could have implications into the fall and the holiday season, Vyas said, "Any disruption could have a devastating financial loss to UPS, but I think to the rest of the economy, it will create a massive impact on our ability to move the packages."

The strike deadline is Aug. 1.

UPS is urging the Teamsters to resume negotiations, saying, "Only our non-union competitors benefit from the Teamsters' actions."

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