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Kokua Line

By June Watanabe

Sunday, July 28, 2002


Bulky-item trash crews lag
but are trying to catch up


Question: What is happening to the city bulky item pickup? Last month, I followed the schedule to put my bulky items out for pickup on Monday. They said pickup for Kaimuki is the third Monday of the month. But they did not pick it up last month and we finally had to hire someone to take everything away. This month, we took out a couch. We were told to put it on the curb before 6 a.m. on Monday, July 15. But until today, July 24, they have not picked it up. I called three or four times and they repeat the same answers -- that they are behind schedule. Can you help us? We are senior citizens and this is becoming hard for us, plus it does not look good to have it out for so long.

Answer: Bulky item pickups have been behind schedule by about a week and a half for the Honolulu area, which runs from Foster Village to Kalama Valley, acknowledged John Lee, acting chief of the city's refuse division.

The Kaimuki area should have been covered by last Thursday, while the rest of the Honolulu district should be caught up within the next week, he said.

That explains the situation for July.

"We were on schedule last month," Lee said, so he didn't know why your pickup was missed in June.

He wondered if your house might have been missed because it is on a cul-de-sac or for some reason is not readily apparent to bulky-item crews.

Normally, pickups are made within a two-and-a-half-day period for the eight "sectors" in the Honolulu area -- Monday-Wednesday or Wednesday-Friday, Lee explained.

He suggested calling the Honolulu yard at 523-4424 if something has not been picked up within that time frame.

"If the sector is supposed to start on Monday, then by Thursday it should be gone," he said. "If their pickup begins on Wednesday and by Saturday it's not gone, then they should call the yard."

Lee added, "We do whatever is necessary, including overtime work, to stay on schedule. Summertime, it's sometimes difficult to get enough people on the crews."

Q: What is your definition of "second-day air"? I purchased something on the Internet late on a Tuesday for delivery by FedEx by "second-day air." It was shipped, understandably, the next day, so the expectation is that I would get it on Friday. However, they told me it wouldn't be delivered until Monday. Part of the reason was because they said they don't make deliveries Saturday and Sunday. I asked what their definition of "second-day air" was and I couldn't get a straight answer. In my mind, if you buy something on a particular day, overnight delivery would be the next day and "second-day air" would be the second day. Is that stupid of me?

A: Generally speaking, "second-day air" means delivery in 48 hours, according to FedEx spokeswoman Jennifer McGowan.

However, this being Hawaii, "second-day air" actually means delivery from anyplace on the mainland to Hawaii in three BUSINESS days, with no FedEx delivery on Saturdays or Sundays. We found an explanation of the delivery promise to and from Hawaii at www.fedex.com after doing a search for "Hawaii."

In your case, that would account for the delivery date three days later than you expected.

McGowan said she's sorry for your inconvenience and hoped "we're making the delivery as promised."

She noted that if you placed an order with a company, FedEx would consider the company to be its customer.

"Our responsibility would be to the company that sold the goods," she said. "So we would provide the shipper the tracking number and all that." In some cases, the shipper's customer would have to call the shipper to get the tracking number, etc., she added.

It's ultimately the responsibility of the shipper to "read, understand and know the service guidelines," she said.

It would make sense that that information would be passed on to you, the purchaser, which apparently didn't happen. McGowan said in FedEx's terms and guidelines for "second-day air" to Alaska and Hawaii, "shipping to anywhere in Hawaii, regardless of from New York or California, if it's shipped on second-day air, our delivery promise is three days."

However, if the delivery day falls on a Saturday or Sunday and there is no weekend delivery in the delivery area, as in your case, "that package would not go until the next business day," which would be Monday, McGowan said.

She noted that FedEx promises to deliver an item by a certain time and date and "we have up until that delivery promise to deliver the package."

FedEx guarantees "that you won't get it 60 minutes after the delivery promise. We give ourselves a grace period of 60 minutes. In that case, provided it's not late because of an uncontrollable circumstance, say for example, weather, than we provide a money-back guarantee."

For more information, check FedEx's Web site or call customer service at 1-800-463-3339.

Mahalo

To Hertz managers Linda Bradsberry and Jean Kirkendall. Following the recent twin drownings at Hanauma Bay, they showed their aloha by quietly paying for the gas and greatly discounting the survivor's car rental when the car was retrieved by the Visitor Aloha Society of Hawaii. -- Scot Shimamura, Visitor Aloha Society of Hawaii

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