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December 22, 2014

Multiple fatalities in bin lorry crash in Glasgow, Scotland

Multiple fatalities in bin lorry crash in Glasgow, Scotland

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Monday, December 22, 2014

Disasters and accidents

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At least six fatalities have resulted this afternoon from a bin lorry crashing in the centre of Glasgow, Scotland.

The accident occurred at about 1430 UTC today, when the vehicle hit multiple pedestrians on Queen Street, then crashed into Millennium Hotel alongside George Square, located in the city centre. BBC Scotland reporter Laura Bicker reported witness accounts the vehicle “careered out of control” and the driver “slumped over the wheel” when the crash occurred.

It is not yet clear how many people have been killed or injured, although Police Scotland have reported “a number of fatalities and people injured”, with “all casualties, including the driver of the bin lorry”, alternately being taken to Southern General Hospital, Western Infirmary and Glasgow Royal Infirmary. They later said on Twitter at least six people have died and eight people are receiving hospital treatment. Police Superintendent Stewart Carle said at least seven people suffered serious injury, although the total number of those injured may be greater than this. Sky News has reported six fatalities and a larger number of people injured.

Superintendent Carle further explained that police will investigate what the force has described as a “major incident” for the rest of the day and overnight, although they do not suspect there was any “sinister” activity behind it. They told the council to leave Christmas lights on to help the investigation; the council had offered to switch them off as a mark of respect. A winter wonderland attraction has been operating in the area this month. Anyone with photos or video is asked to email the police at georgesquareincident@scotland.pnn.police.uk.

Social media is abuzz with Scots and their loved ones checking each other are safe, and offering condolences. “Absolutely gutted for the families of the people killed today, to think[…] I could’ve been killed too is a shock,” said one woman, who passed the scene shortly before the crash. She added she had “seen people in body bags” and was reluctant to go to get her train in Queen Street Station “incase I see more bodies”. “Genuinely don’t care about Xmas shopping now[, I] was getting so stressed over silly things when other people are losing their family… will be thinking of them at Xmas” she said, later telling well-wishers “Thanks so much guys send your good vibes to their families though they’re the ones that really need it”.

Another local woman said she is “stunned” and she had “stood in that exact spot yesterday afternoon. Taking pictures of the lights”. She says the city now faces “Another sad Christmas.” She was referring to a police helicopter that crashed into a Glasgow pub on November 29 last year. Three on board and seven on the ground were killed.

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Individuals concerned about the welfare of family and friends in Glasgow can call Police Scotland on 01786 289070



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November 27, 2010

Teen charged over \’bomb attempt\’ at US Christmas celebration

Teen charged over ‘bomb attempt’ at US Christmas celebration

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Saturday, November 27, 2010

Cquote1.svg The threat was very real. Our investigation shows that Mohamud was absolutely committed to carrying out an attack on a very grand scale. Cquote2.svg

—Arthur Balizan, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Oregon

A 19-year-old Oregon, U.S. resident has been charged with attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction after a sting operation; authorities say Mohamed Osman Mohamud, born in Somalia, tried to detonate a van bomb using a mobile phone at a Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Portland.

Portland was the scene of an alleged bombing attempt.
Image: Jamidwyer.

The device, police stated, was fake; he reportedly obtained it from undercover agents during a sting operation. Reports say Mohamud, a US citizen, had been in regular contact with somebody in north-west Pakistan.

Authorities intercepted e-mails they say were between Mohamud and this contact in August 2009. Holton reassured Oregon residents, adding that there was “no reason to believe there is any continuing threat arising from this case”. Mohamud allegededly told an FBI agent “I want whoever is attending that event to leave, to leave either dead or injured.” Dwight Holton, a U.S. attorney, described Mohamud’s “chilling determination” as a “stark reminder that there are people—even here in Oregon—who are determined to kill Americans.”

An FBI agent told reporters “[t]he threat was very real. Our investigation shows that Mohamud was absolutely committed to carrying out an attack on a very grand scale. I want to reassure the people of this community that, at every turn, we denied him the ability to actually carry out the attack.” On the day of the tree lighting ceremony, he drove a vehicle to the area where the event was to be held, and was arrested, prosecutors said, twenty minutes before the tree was to be lit. He kicked at agents as they tried to apprehend him and shouted “Allahu Akbar!” (God is great!).

Court papers indicated that an undercover agent told Mohamud that he was an associate of the Pakistani contact. When the agent and Mohamud discussed the plan, Mohamud said that he wanted a “huge mass that will be attacked in their own element with their families celebrating the holidays”. Mohamud told the agent that he had wanted to carry out a jihad (holy war) against the U.S. since he was fifteen years old.



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December 26, 2009

Pope attacked during Christmas Eve Mass

Pope attacked during Christmas Eve Mass – Wikinews, the free news source

Pope attacked during Christmas Eve Mass

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Saturday, December 26, 2009

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Pope Benedict XVI circa 2006

A woman attacked Pope Benedict XVI during Christmas Eve Mass at St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City, causing a disruption to the ceremonies. The pope was unharmed and got to his feet and completed the Mass, although afterwards he was taken to a local hospital for evaluation. French Cardinal Roger Etchegaray also fell down and broke a leg. The accused assailant, Susanna Maiolo, is a 25-year-old Swiss national from the Ticino region, is reported to have psychiatric problems.

Susanna Maiolo also attempted to attack the pope during last years Midnight Mass, although she was stopped by security. During both assaults it appears that she was wearing the same red sweater. Vatican spokesman, Rev Federico Lombardi said that “She is known to the Vatican but she was never thought to have been of any serious danger to the Holy Father.”

Despite the attack the pontiff decided to continue the midnight mass services. Although noticeably shaken, he still delivered the traditional “Urbi et Orbi” speech. In this years speech he mentioned the current financial crisis, conflicts in Africa and Israel, and the state of the Christian minority in Iraq.



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December 19, 2009

Students raise record amounts of money during Christmas fundraiser at Benet Academy, Illinois

Students raise record amounts of money during Christmas fundraiser at Benet Academy, Illinois

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Saturday, December 19, 2009

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Benet Academy

Students at Benet Academy in Lisle, Illinois, United States raised record amounts of money this year during their Christmas Drive fundraiser.

The annual two-week event is aimed at promoting the Christmas spirit in helping the poor and needy. Coordination of the fundraiser is a joint effort by the faculty and three students organizations—Student Government, National Honor Society (NHS), and Outreach. Donations from previous years have allowed Outreach to provide food and Christmas gifts to dozens of families during the holiday season. NHS in the past has provided blankets, winter gear, and toys to local families as well.

A semi-formal dance held on Dec. 5 kicked off the Christmas Drive this year. Two weeks of in-school fundraising efforts ensued, including several no-uniform days and Benet’s traditional Penny Wars. In that four-day activity, the four grade levels competed against each other to see who can collect the most pennies. Nickels, dimes, and quarters were allowed but had negative value in the class total. The seniors won this contest, allowing them to have a no-uniform day on Dec. 11. Other activities such as bake sales and a beard-growing contest raised money as well.

During an all-school assembly on Friday, the last day of the drive, Student Government President Kyle Marinko announced that preliminary calculations put the amount of donations at US$53,392.82, a record for the school. Last year’s drive collected approximately US$42,000. A final total has not been officially announced, since Student Government officials continue to count additional donations that have been received.


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November 9, 2009

Disney has high hopes for new \’Ferb\’ Christmas special

Disney has high hopes for new ‘Ferb’ Christmas special

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Monday, November 9, 2009

Television
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The Walt Disney Company has today announced the inclusion of a Christmas special in its animated comedy series Phineas and Ferb. The special, entitled “Phineas and Ferb’s Christmas Vacation,” will follow the series’ protagonists, stepbrothers Phineas and Ferb, trying to spread Christmas cheer across their city after the mad scientist Dr. Doofenshmirtz uses a machine to cancel the holiday.

Dan Povenmire and Jeff “Swampy” Marsh.
Image: Joe Meno.

Disney has high expectations for the special. On November 27, the company will stream one of the seven musical numbers that will be showcased in the special on its public radio network Radio Disney. The official special is set to air accordingly the following month on December 6, 2009, on the company’s cable network Disney XD. Soon after, it will air on fellow Disney networks Disney Channel and ABC Family.

Cquote1.svg It’s a really sweet, warm special that we’re really proud to have our name on. Cquote2.svg

—Dan Povenmire

The crew of the series too have high hopes for the Christmas special. Zac Moncrief, who directed the special, announced that he believes it will “go down in history as a cartoon classic.” When asked about the special, co-creator Jeff “Swampy” Marsh explained, “It’s kind of intimidating. You sit down and think, ‘This is something that’s going to live at Christmas for a long, long time.'” Dan Povenmire, the other co-founder, said of his excitement over the featured musical numbers, “[H]opefully they’ll be songs that this generation of kids will think of as Christmas songs the same way that kids think of ‘Dahoo dore’ (from ‘How The Grinch Stole Christmas’) or ‘Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer.'”



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August 24, 2009

Christmas arrives early in Rochdale, Greater Manchester

Christmas arrives early in Rochdale, Greater Manchester

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Monday, August 24, 2009

Cquote1.svg We have a duty to save taxpayers’ money Cquote2.svg

—Rochdale borough council spokeswoman

Christmas lights in 2006, Tokyo
Image: User:Kure.

The Greater Manchester town of Rochdale has begun setting up decorations for a number of festivities, including Eid, a Muslim holiday. However, there’s a twist—in order to save money, the town is also erecting Christmas decorations early.

Among the decorations were a giant Noel sign, holly leaves, and a skiing penguin. Some residents were opposed to the move; one person said, “Seeing the lights makes me feel depressed. I know we haven’t had much of a summer, but let’s get it out of the way first”. Another commented, “It’s ludicrous. It’s the height of summer and they’re putting up Christmas lights. A worker told me they had to be up in time for all the religious festivals, but most of the lights refer to the Christian Christmas.”

A spokeswoman for the Rochdale borough council said, “We understand that we’re early putting Christmas lights up now, but we are merely putting them up and not switching them on. We have a duty to save taxpayers’ money, and by putting them up now with lights for other festivities – including Eid in September – we will be saving around £10,000”.



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December 29, 2008

Nine dead after armed Santa Claus opens fire in LA suburb

Nine dead after armed Santa Claus opens fire in LA suburb

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Monday, December 29, 2008

This map shows the incorporated areas in Los Angeles County, California. Covina, the site of the massacre, is highlighted in red.

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At least nine people have been killed in a two-story house in Covina, California, after a man dressed in a full Santa Claus outfit opened fire at a Christmas Eve party and then set the house ablaze. Covina is a city in Los Angeles County, California about 22 miles (35 km) east of downtown Los Angeles.

According to local police, the Christmas party at the 1100 block of East Knollcrest Drive was attended by about 25 people. Trend News Agency said that the gunman fired two semi-automatic handguns and used an apparently home-made pressurized device to spread some kind of accelerant. As the guests tried in vain to escape, the gunman used his ‘present’ to spray inflammable liquid that started the raging blaze. Reports from the scene said Molotov cocktails were also used by the madman.

Media reports said the gunman was plotting vengeance against his ex-wife. Prime suspect, Bruce Jeffrey Pardo, age 45, six-foot-three-inch, 250 pound (1.9 meter, 113 kilogram), an electrical engineer, is long time Roman Catholic church usher and a laid-off aerospace worker. He worked with ITT Electronic Systems, Radar Systems, in Van Nuys from February 2005 to July 2008, and as an engineer at Northrop Grumman for five months in 2005, according to Court records. He had also worked for about nine years at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena until 1994.

Pardo’s ex-sister-in-law, who escaped from the Covina house alive with her injured daughter, called 911. Police on Friday released her 911 audio.

Msnbc.com has reported that Pardo “has brown hair and blue eyes, and known to frequent La Crescenta and La Verne.” Court records reveal that Mr Pardo’s wife acrimoniously divorced him last September. The divorce decree was finalized December 18. Until earlier this year, he lived in the Sylmar house with his ex-wife and her three children. The marriage lasted barely a year. However, Pardo held no criminal record and had no history of violence.

Pardo drove a Dodge Caliber to his brother’s house in the Sylmar area before committing suicide.

There is some speculation that the divorce may have been caused by Pardo concealing a paraplegic child from a previous relationship. Matthew, his nine-year-old son, by another former girlfriend, Elena Lucano, became brain damaged when he fell into a backyard swimming pool on Jan. 6, 2001. Pardo kept this child a secret from his wife. Pardo owed her $10,000 as part of the divorce settlement, according to court documents that detailed a bitter split. He also lost a dog he doted on and did not get back a valuable wedding ring. Pardo complained in a court declaration that Sylvia Pardo was living with her parents, not paying rent, and had spent lavishly on a luxury car, gambling trips to Las Vegas, meals at fine restaurants, massages and golf lessons.

After the mass murder, Pardo put on his street clothes and drove his rental Dodge Caliber car to the house of his brother, Jimmy Pardo, in Sylmar, approximately 30 miles away from the crime scene, where he committed suicide from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. His brother was not present in the home and he broke inside to enter in. It was believed that Pardo intended to flee to Canada by plane as he had bought an airline ticket to a flight there from Los Angeles to Moline, Illinois. However due to suffering from severe third-degree burns on both arms stemming from the blaze, he decided to go against the initial plan.

Police had found $17,000 cling-wrapped on his legs inside a girdle, the car key, and his rental car that had been parked on Herrick Avenue, one block from his brother’s house, which had been rigged by remnants of his Santa suit that would ignite a flame and detonate the car with black powder if removed. Also recovered from the scene were four 13-round capacity handguns that were each empty, and at least 200 rounds of ammunition. Suggesting that what had been inside the car was being treated as a threat, police fired an incendiary device into it, destroying and burning it.

The police found on early Thursday, Mr Pardo bore a single gunshot wound to the head. According to LA County coroner’s official Ed Winter, the bodies found in the ashes were “extremely charred and burned.” All three of Sylvia Pardo’s children — Selina, Sal and Amanda — survived. According to the Scott Nord, the Ortega family lawyer, “the entire family was wiped out, and there’s basically like 16 orphans.”

Three other party guests have injuries, according to police. A 16-year-old girl was shot in the back, and an eight-year-old girl suffered facial gunshot wounds that were not life-threatening, while a 20-year-old woman had a broken ankle, after jumping from a second-story window, the police specified. About 80 firefighters put off the fire that soared fifteen metres (40 to 50 feet) high for more than one hour. The police discovered two handguns at the scene, and found two more in the in-laws’ house. Media reports on Friday said the 16-year-old daughter of Sylvia Pardo was released from Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center.

Meanwhile, investigators served a search warrant at Pardo’s Montrose house, where they retrieved evidence of high-octane racing fuel, five empty boxes for semi-automatic handguns, as well as two shotguns.

1998-2000 RAV4 2-door Convertible

Covina police Lt. Pat Buchanan on Saturday said they are looking for Pardo’s rented gray 1999 RAV4, with California license plate 5RYD562. Police have found the second rental car Saturday night in a Glendale, California but found no bombs nor any explosives.

The police also revealed Saturday the names of nine people missing since the Christmas Eve massacre occurred. They are Pardo’s ex-wife, Sylvia Pardo, 43; her parents, Joseph Ortega, 80, and Alicia Ortega, 70; Alicia Ortiz, 46, and her son, Michael Ortiz, 17; Sylvia’s brother, Charles Ortega, 50, and his wife, Cheri, 45; another brother, James Ortega, 52, and his wife, Teresa, 51, according to Lt. Buchanan. “Hopefully, we’ll get positive identifications early next week,” Covina Police Chief Kim Raney said.

A murder-suicide is an act in which an individual kills one or more other persons immediately before, or at the same time as, killing him or herself. According to the psychiatrist Karl A. Menninger, murder-suicide or murder and suicide are interchangeable acts – suicide sometimes forestalling murder, and vice versa.



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December 25, 2007

Leaders throughout the world deliver Christmas messages

Leaders throughout the world deliver Christmas messages

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Tuesday, December 25, 2007

International leaders have issued Christmas time messages:

Australia

In his first Christmas address as Australia’s Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd called on his nation to drive safely during the holiday season, noting that his father was killed in a vehicle collision in the late 1960s. Rudd also commended the nation’s charities for helping the less fortunate, and Australian troops serving abroad.

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The Bahamas

As Bahamian Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham’s extended Christmas greetings, he noted various challenges such as the economic downturn on Grand Bahama island and the heavy rainfall damage sustained in some regions in October and November. The nation prepares to celebrate its Junkanoo festival on Wednesday.

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Belgium

The Christmas and New Year’s address of Belgium’s King Albert called for national harmony among the national cultures, chiefly the Flemish and Walloon groups. This follows a year in which a national government could not be assembled for many months since elections in June.

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Canada

Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Christmas message paid tribute to the nation’s generous spirit whose “purest expression today is the Canadian mission in Afghanistan, where our soldiers, diplomats and aid workers are, at great cost to themselves helping the Afghan people rebuild their shattered country.” He noted the significant anniversaries to come in 2008 such as the 150 years since the founding of British Columbia colony and the 400 years since Quebec City was created by Samuel de Champlain.

Some controversy arose as the Prime Minister’s greeting omitted the Islamic Eid-ul-Adha observance, while including Hanukkah and Christmas.

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Liberia

Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, President of Liberia, noted progress in the country’s labour and economic situations during her Christmas address.

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Philippines

From the Philippines, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s ‘s Christmas message included a tribute to the nation’s 8 million overseas workers, extending gratitude to their host nations.

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Turkey

Turkish President Abdullah Gül issued a Christmas message on Monday expressing wishes for unity and tolerance in the nation. Although Turkey is a largely Islamic nation, the President indicated its Christian citizens were “equal members of the Turkish nation”.

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United States

American President George Bush’s brief Christmas statement began with a passage from the Gospel of Luke foretelling the Nativity of Jesus, then gave “thanks for Christ’s message of love and mercy” while remembering the nation’s “responsibility to serve”.

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United Kingdom

Queen Elizabeth’s annual Christmas message began and ended footage from her 1957 Christmas address, the first message from a British Monarch to be televised. Her 2007 address mentioned family, the work of troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the need for charity. A recently-introduced royal YouTube channel also presented the Queen’s Christmas message for Internet viewers.

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The Vatican

Pope Benedict delivered his Christmas “Urbi et orbi” to many thousands at Saint Peter’s Square in Vatican City after celebrating the traditional Christmas Midnight Mass service. The pontiff remembered the world’s war-torn regions including Africa, the Middle East and the Balkans, calling for the light of Christ to “shine forth and bring consolation to those who live in the darkness of poverty, injustice and war.” He decried the various injustices and conflicts, noting these “are destroying the internal fabric of many countries and embittering international relations.”

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December 13, 2007

Explicit Canadian workplace safety ads pulled from TV due to Christmas season

Explicit Canadian workplace safety ads pulled from TV due to Christmas season

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Thursday, December 13, 2007

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Controversial and explicit Canadian workplace safety ads have been pulled from television, and paper ads from some bus shelters for the Christmas season. However, the ads will return to air in January.

“It’s totally erroneous to suggest we’re pulling anything,” chairman of the Workplace Safety and Information Board of Ontario, Steve Mahoney said. “Our plan from Day 1 was to stop the ads around the middle of December when most of the advertising that’s in the media is focused on Christmas and purchasing gifts. We just didn’t want to be competing with all that stuff.”

In one of the TV ads a woman accidentally slips on grease on the floor and a large steaming pot falls onto her face, and she starts screaming to death. The ads end with the message “There really are no accidents”.

A paper ads shows a construction worker who is in a pool of blood with a forklift operation manual stuck in his chest. Another with a man who is slit by a “Danger” sign with his leg stuck in a machine. They show the messages: “Lack of training can kill” and the other “Ignoring safety procedures can kill”.

“The critics amount to about 25 per cent rating, and I’m delighted they’re upset about the ads because I wouldn’t want anyone to enjoy watching them.”

The videos have been viewed more than 70,000 times on the Board’s website and are gaining large amounts of views on YouTube.

The transit authorities of Hamilton and Mississauga will show modified advertisements. The transit authority of Guelph will show the ads in bus shelters, but the transit authority of Windsor will not because of the graphic nature.

“We’re not against workplace safety, but this is too graphic,” said Caroline Postma, chair of the Transit Windsor board.

Mississauga city councillour Carolyn Parrish said: “My son-in-law was telling me that they shouldn’t be on in prime time because when [my grandson] watches them he just about bursts into tear. Now he follows his mom around the kitchen to make sure she doesn’t spill grease. And he’s only four. There’s too much of a chance that … people are really badly affected by it, and can’t really do anything about it anyway.” She suggested the ads only be aired to workers with the jobs shown in the commercials.

Mahoney changed the earlier promise to air the ads only after 8:00pm to after 9:00pm at last nights meeting with Mississauga city council.

Mahoney said the commercials and paper ads are not “too graphic at all”. And they are “absolutely appropriate and they’re doing what they’re intended to do, they’re creating what I call a water cooler topic of conversation.”

Ninety-eight Canadian workers so far have been killed on the job this year.

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December 21, 2005

Posted deadlines for Christmas delivery

Filed under: Archived,Christmas — admin @ 5:00 am

Posted deadlines for Christmas delivery – Wikinews, the free news source

Posted deadlines for Christmas delivery

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Wednesday, December 21, 2005

In the United States of America and other parts of the word, as Christmas and the holidays draw near, shippers have released information on shipping deadlines. Remember to always clearly label and address your holiday packages.

December 21

FedEx

FedEx International Economy

This is the last day to ship to Mexico from the US.

U.S. Post Office

Deadline to ship using Priority Mail® service

DHL (U.S.)

Second Day Delivery

December 22

FedEx

FedEx Priority Overnight
FedEx Standard Overnight
FedEx International Priority

This is the last day to ship to Canada and Puerto Rico from the US.

DHL (U.S)

Next Day Delivery

Royal Mail

Special Delivery

An Post

EMS courier/Swiftpost

December 23

U.S. Post Office

Deadline to ship using Express Mail® service

DHL (Germany)

Express Service

Sources

FedEx website
DHL website
Royal Mail website
An Post website
US Post Office website
Weihnachtspäckchen rechtzeitig verschicken

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