Courier Restart: So Much to Know!

Hey, Stranger!

Is your library ready to jump back into statewide resource sharing? If not, there’s no pressure from CLiC. Local control rules the day.

But if your library is ready, we first need some information from you.  Please fill out the Restoration of Courier Service form so we can let WPL (Western Peaks Logistics) know that your library is ready for service to resume.

BEFORE you get started, PLEASE read further. These details are important, so that your expectations are realistically matched with CLiC’s ability to deliver service.

  • Statewide courier service will not be turned on with a single flip of the switch. It requires a measured, staged approach because libraries are re-opening on different dates and with different service models. Local control determines when a public, academic, school or special library re-opens, and to what extent that library’s services involve interlibrary loan.
  • When a library requests that its courier service be restarted, it means the library anticipates having staff ready to receive delivery and process interlibrary loan requests. Libraries will not be allowed to periodically request starts and stops to their service. A library requesting restart of courier service should have confidence that its facilities will be operational for an extended period of time.
  • Courier service will be restored to a library after a determination by Western Peaks that a) the route is deemed efficient; b) fleet and driver capacity provides for the ability to provide sustainable, consistent pickup & delivery to the library.
  • Routing and scheduling is determined by WPL, not by CLiC or local libraries. Libraries cannot request specific time windows or changes to their delivery schedule. Deliveries/pickups will occur during either a morning window (9-1) or afternoon window (12-4). Check your current Courier Agreement for specifics on delivery days and times.

FAQs

Here are a few FAQs that you may be wondering about regarding restart of courier service.

I’ve already filled out your restoration of services form. Do I need to fill it out again?

Nope, you’ve done your part! If you already filled out the form, we have your details in hand. Subsequent broadcast messages you receive from us promoting the restart and the form are meant for all of those libraries who haven’t yet filled it out.

Most libraries are getting courier now; why aren’t we?!

We understand the emotion and concern behind this question. Many libraries are receiving service, and many still are not. For a quick dive into the complexities and reasons for a slow ramp-up in this statewide service, check out Wild Days Ahead: Restarting Library Courier

What if I don’t have enough empty bins for material that needs to be picked up?

We’ve got you covered! Let us know what you need on The Restoration of Courier Service form. In late April 2020, CLiC invested $8,000 to purchase additional gray bins to help smooth the restart process.  All library material needs to be in a gray bin.

Is Western Peaks disinfecting every item that passes through its system?

No. When courier services are running at full capacity, a typical DAY could involve more than 10,000 items. Libraries are encouraged to use their own local standards of quarantining and disinfecting material.

Bins held by Western Peaks Logistics while courier services were suspended have been wiped down with disinfectant. No item-level disinfecting has been done.

Are drivers required to adopt safe-handling procedures?

Yes. Western Peaks Logistics has reported that drivers do wear gloves, masks and have been advised to follow established safety guidelines. Drivers are temperature scanned at their hub locations on a daily basis. The company, many weeks ago, created protocols for regularly disinfecting high-touch surfaces and other points for common contact. Since the onset of the public health crisis, no WPL drivers have tested positive for COVID-19.

Are libraries required to disinfect material in a standardized way?

No. Remember, time is the best disinfectant. Quarantine and disinfecting procedures are determined locally by each participating library. Many libraries are adopting 72-hour quarantine periods for material returned by patrons or received through the courier.

See the latest research-based findings for how long the COVID-19 virus lives on library material, as published by the REALM Project.

In early April, CLiC issued a guide that addresses some aspects of safe material handling. See: Returning to Service: Libraries and COVID-19. Follow your internal procedures for handling incoming materials, just as you would for materials returned by patrons.

Is there anything else I should be thinking about?

We are communicating actively with our colleagues at Marmot, the Alliance, Colorado State Library (SWIFT) and Flatirons Library Consortium. Since CLiC already manages AspenCat, we have those internal communication lines well established.

However, we strongly advise that your library think through what resource sharing looks like for your community and what dependencies on the statewide courier are involved — BEFORE turning on within your library catalog any patron-initiated interlibrary loan functionality. Consider waiting until courier is running consistently to your location.

Hooray! Is my library making a difference?

Absolutely! CLiC’s goal is to make it simple for your library, ensure communication is clear and consistent, and that all libraries choosing to participate in this resource-sharing system recognize that we’re all in this together. We’re a community. It’s imperfect, but works pretty darn well when we pitch in together.

Courier Impacts from COVID-19

Libraries throughout the state have been announcing closures to the public and their communities since Friday, March 13.

CLiC immediately responded by setting up a process for libraries to use in requesting suspension of courier service.

Read more here, along with our recent decision to suspend statewide courier service.

Send and receive materials right from your back door

Few services are as ubiquitous or as cost effective as the Courier, the physical delivery side of interlibrary loan.

Colorado libraries lend or borrow millions of items from one another: books, CDs, DVDs and more! At an average of $.23 per item (2016), participating libraries pay to transport material throughout Colorado, receiving courier service three, four or five days a week.

Each year more than 2.6 million items move through the statewide courier. That’s enough materials to stack 30 items high on every seat at Sports Authority Field.