July 18, 2012, 12:00 PM

Amazon tackles an Olympic-sized delivery issue

The e-retailer suggests the use of Amazon Lockers during the London games.

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Amazon has written to all its U.K. customers  to inform them that the closures of numerous roads in London during the Olympic Games will not disrupt its distribution network or delay its deliveries.

“We have worked closely with our carrier network to ensure that you receive your packages on time, from the moment the torch arrives in London on 16 July until the closure of the Olympic Park on 14 September,” the e-mail from Amazon  states. “This includes residential and commercial addresses in or around the Olympic venues. The carriers delivering your Amazon orders have all planned for any disruption that the Olympic Road Network could cause. They’re using a variety of different methods to ensure your usual delivery service continues, including employing more staff, bicycle routes and foot deliveries, to name but a few.”

The Olympic Route Network—a network of roads linking all competition venues and other key sites, such as Heathrow Airport—will be tightly controlled for the duration of the games to allow events such as the marathon and cycling races to take place, as well as to allow athletes and Olympic officials, police, ambulance and fire services, and visiting dignitaries the ability to move freely around the venues and the surrounding areas.

Although Amazon does not anticipate disruptions to its deliveries, it does suggest that customers may want to use an Amazon Locker. The Amazon Locker delivery program lets consumers select at checkout a local pick-up location for their online orders. Packages are then delivered to secured lockers where a consumer can pick them up after entering a code that unlocks the locker containing his delivery.

 “There will be 25 automated Amazon Lockers situated at convenient locations like shopping centers, high street locations and some transport links,” Amazon says. The e-retail giant has in the past few months been working with the Co-op, which has a network of almost 5,000 stores in the United Kingdom,  to place Amazon Lockers in a small number of Co-op stores across the country.

Amazon says its Amazon Locker network is growing and will continue to be available after the Games have finished.

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