The bad weather is threatening to wreak havoc for online Christmas shoppers as parcel delivery companies – who are already working close to maximum capacity – struggle to clear a backlog of up to 3 million parcels.
The move comes despite Royal Mail claiming 90 per cent of mail is still being delivered.
But Global Freight Solutions said the current cold snap has badly affected deliveries across the country at the busiest time of the year for the industry. Up to half of the 6 million packages being moved to businesses and consumers by Britain’s big carriers have been subjected to delays.
A spokesman said: “Everyone is working around the clock to try and find ways to get consignments to their destination but with some of the country’s roads almost impassable, there’s little that carriers can do for the moment.
“The bad weather has created a third spike in pre-Christmas traffic for the parcel industry. Whereas the others are linked to a seasonal rise in shipments to businesses and consumers, this additional peak is represented by a huge backlog which has occurred with carriers already working at close to maximum capacity.”
Meanwhile, Royal Mail conceded that 10 per cent of post had not been delivered, despite yesterday claiming it was “business as usual”.
The news coincides with reports that retailers face Christmas shortages of toys, clothing, electrical goods and furniture after the weather closed a number of the UK’s largest sea ports and airports.
Although retailers have already taken shipment of most of their seasonal products, the disruption could lead to severe delays in last-minute replenishments.
Posties battle through blizzard