Neither COVID-19 nor the cold will stop Santa’s mission

Neither COVID-19 nor the winter wave hitting North America will affect Santa’s mission to deliver gifts on Christmas Eve, the US military agency that tracks Santa’s journey has said.

The Tracks Santa service from NORAD, the North American Aerospace Defense Command, allows people to follow Santa’s holiday journey through its website, social media channels and mobile app.

This year, the Colorado Springs, Colo.-based agency will have about 1,500 volunteers working on Christmas Eve to take phone calls from children wanting to know Santa’s location and delivery times.

Lt. Gen. David Nahom, a NORAD official in Anchorage, Alaska, said the pandemic hasn’t affected Santa’s busy delivery schedule and he doesn’t expect any impact this weekend either.

The freezing temperatures and heavy snowfall that are disrupting holiday travel in the United States shouldn’t be a problem for a man who lives at the North Pole, Nahom said.

“I think Santa will feel right at home in sub-zero arctic weather,” Nahom said.

The NORAD Christmas tradition began in 1955, after a boy mistakenly called a Colorado military commando to ask to speak to Santa. More calls came in, so the shift commander assigned an officer to answer Santa’s calls, and the tradition stuck ever since.

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