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However, capacity is not always fixed in quite this way. Consider systems for delivering parcels ordered online.

The Christmas Exception by Gail Farrelly - FictionDB

In this case the Christmas peak reflects the need to dispatch a very large number of items and ensure they arrive before the critical day — in short, it is the need for simultaneity, not size as such, that matters. While there are physical limits in terms of capacity — the volume of warehousing and lorry space is fixed, much like the size of the oven — the difference is that there is scope to work harder: Shipping and logistics businesses are simply not optimised for Christmas peaks, and no one would expect this either.

In this example measures adopted to cope with extreme pressure are layered on top of a system that is in fact designed for regular loads, unlike the oven which is sized for peak demand. Christmas peaks provide other insights into the patterning of social life and the energy demands that follow. At 3pm, other activities paused and televisions were switched on, closely preceded and followed by millions of kettles.

This is no longer so. Instead, the anticipated afternoon surge, once the turkey has been eaten, is in the flow of data. An estimated , extra gigabytes of data will be used on Christmas Day alone.

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These details provide a glimpse of wider, year round, trends in forms of information, communication and entertainment. As ways of spending time evolve — even on Christmas day — new peaks and surges occur. Appliances and systems are sized to cater for what are essentially social loads like those of eating Christmas dinner together. As Christmas also demonstrates, there are different types of peak and different types of response, such as maintaining idle standby capacity at all times exemplified by turkey-sized oven , or designing and optimising for base load and augmenting that at critical moments hiring seasonal staff.


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Perhaps most important of all, Christmas peaks in demand arise as a consequence of what people do: These days will bring a mix of commuters heading to work and the beginning surge of holiday travel. Depending on the strength and extent of that storm later next week, there may be added slowdowns on the highways, a greater risk of accidents, and perhaps some minor airline delays related to poor visibility and a low cloud ceiling at some of the major hubs in the Midwest and East. A second storm, an Alberta clipper, may drop in and spread rain and snow showers from the Great Lakes to northern New England.

It is beyond next weekend, when the weather pattern may become ornery with the potential for a big storm in the eastern part of the nation close to or perhaps shortly after Christmas. Confidence is much higher that rain and thunderstorms may affect the Southeast just prior Christmas.

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It's less certain that the storm will impact parts of the Midwest and Northeast during and just after Christmas Day with that storm. If it does impact those northern areas, rain, snow and ice could all be a concern.

Both of the storms, late next week and around Christmas, may fuel heavy thunderstorms in part of the Deep South. The Region collects real Christmas trees from the curb on select days in January. Check your collection calendar before setting out your tree. If you live in an apartment or condo, put your Christmas tree at the curb by the driveway entrance of your property. Be sure your tree doesn't obstruct the road or sidewalk.

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If your tree is taller than 3 m 10 ft , bring it to a Peel Community Recycling Centre. There will be no drop-off fees at the CRCs for Christmas trees during the Christmas tree collection period. Thanks to all your conservation efforts, we have recycled Along with your garbage, recycling and organics, the Region collects some oversized items, small appliances and furniture from the curb free of charge on your regular garbage collection day.

This list is a sample of acceptable oversized items the Region will collect from the curb on your regular garbage collection day.

Christmas traditions: past and present

Check How to Sort Your Waste if your item isn't listed here. You can also take any of these items to a Peel Community Recycling Centre for disposal. The following items are a sample of acceptable household hazardous waste. Liquid items have a maximum 80 L 20 gal drop-off limit per day.


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The maximum container size is 30 L 8 gal. All waste must be clearly labelled and in sealed containers. Keep containers upright to prevent leaks and spills. The following items are not considered household hazardous waste. Follow the instructions to dispose of these items. Flares and fireworks can be soaked in water for 24 hours, with care taken to fully submerge the items. Once the items are fully saturated, place them in a bag and dispose of them in your regular garbage.

Home medical waste not including sharps can be double bagged and disposed of in your regular garbage.