For many years, parcel lockers have helped the logistics industry in many ways. They enable last-mile package carriers to complete their delivery faster and easier. On the other side of the coin are those who receive parcels that they can just retrieve whenever they want and not have to be present when the delivery guys come.
However, in today’s post-pandemic world, these unassuming parcel lockers are playing a more critical role than they ever have before. This article aims to discuss the role that parcel lockers play in reducing COVID-19 transmission and how it makes everyone’s lives just a bit easier.
What’s the Purpose of Parcel Lockers?
Parcel lockers or package lockers, as the name implies, are mail compartments designed to receive delivered packages that are too large to fit inside a standard mailbox. They are also a centralized way of receiving packages for offices and apartments. The recipients then can access their designated compartments to retrieve their delivered items at their convenience. This ensures that their items are delivered securely.
Reducing Lift Numbers
There are perhaps thousands of parcel lockers placed in commercial and residential buildings all over the country. While their primary purpose is to receive mail, they’re also serving another purpose, which is helping keep lift numbers low. On any given day, there are probably hundreds to thousands of people going up and down lifts in these buildings. Now that many places right now have restrictions in foot traffic and lift access due to the pandemic, parcel lockers are becoming much more important due to their inherent purpose—they prevent delivery couriers from ever needing to access lifts.
Limits on physical distancing affect a number of aspects of high-rise living and working related to deliveries. It affects interactions between couriers, building staff, and recipients, limiting people in common areas such as lifts and lift waiting areas. Although most residential and commercial buildings warn people to observe physical distancing even inside the elevators, those measures are simply not enough to completely prevent transmission.
The Value of Contactless Delivery
While that has always been a result of the use of parcel lockers for many years, it has the potential to prevent further transmission of COVID-19. Since the virus can be transferred through person-to-person contact, the use of parcel lockers prevents that during deliveries.
Although one can argue that contactless delivery can still lead to virus transmission due to the handling of packages, at the very least, it potentially prevents the transmission through skin contact. Building managers can easily just disinfect packages and the parcel lockers themselves to eliminate any possible traces left by the carrier or the recipient.
Designing for Low Visitor Numbers
With parcel lockers serving a new purpose amidst the pandemic, it’s now up to the building owners or even the designers to make these lockers much more accessible to couriers. Design considerations need to focus on the location of the system in relation to courier parking and their path of travel. This way, parcel lockers become much more effective in keeping couriers out of lobbies entirely.
Parcel lockers have been serving as a centralized exchange point for deliveries in apartments, offices, corporations, and universities for decades. With a pandemic raging over the country and the rest of the world, they act as a middleman between couriers and recipients, potentially reducing the risk of person-to-person virus transmission.
GS Parcel is a trusted partner and supplier of package lockers in New Hampshire, Vermont, Maine, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, and other areas. We are a registered partner of Luxer One, one of the country’s leading manufacturers of package locker systems. Contact us today to learn how you can get a parcel locker installed in your area.