Directions: In this section, you are going to read a passage with ten statements attached to it. Each statement contains information given in one of the paragraphs. Identify the paragraph from which the information is derived. You may choose a paragraph more than once. Each paragraph is marked with a letter. Answer the questions by marking the corresponding letter on Answer Sheet 2.
The quiet heroism of mail delivery
A) On Wednesday, a polar wind brought bitter cold to the Midwest. Overnight, Chicago reached a low of 21 degrees Fahrenheit below zero, making it slightly colder than Antarctica (南极洲), Alaska, and the North Pole. Wind chills were 64 degrees below zero in Park Rapids, Minnesota, and 45 degrees below zero in Buffalo, North Dakota, according to the National Weather Service. Schools, restaurants, and businesses closed, and more than 1,000 flights were canceled.
B) Even the United States Postal Service (USPS) suspended mail delivery. “Due to this arctic outbreak and concerns for the safety of USPS employees,” USPS announced Wednesday morning, “the Postal Service is suspending delivery Jan. 30 in some 3-digit ZIP Code locations.” Twelve regions were listed as unsafe on Wednesday; on Thursday, eight remained.
C) As global surface temperatures increase, so does the likelihood of extreme weather. In 2018 alone, wildfires, volcanic eruptions, hurricanes, mudslides, and other natural disasters cost at least $49 billion in the United States. As my colleague Vann Newkirk reported, Puerto Rico is still confronting economic and structural destruction and resource scarcity from 2017's Hurricane Maria. Natural disasters can wreck a community's infrastructure, disrupting systems for months or years. Some services, however, remind us that life will eventually return, in some form, to normal.
D) Days after the deadly 2017 wildfires in Santa Rosa, California, a drone (无人机) caught footage (连续镜头) of a USPS worker, Trevor Smith, driving through burned homes in that familiar white van, collecting mail in an affected area. The video is striking: The operation is familiar, but the scene looks like the end of the world. According to Rae Ann Haight, the program manager for the national-preparedness office at USPS, Smith was fulfilling a request made by some of the home owners to pick up any mail that was left untouched. For Smith, this was just another day on the job. “I followed my route like I normally do,” Smith told a reporter. “As I came across a box that was up but with no house, I checked, and there was mail—outgoing mail—in it. And so we picked those up and carried on.”
E) USPS has sophisticated emergency plans for natural disasters. Across the country, 285 emergency-management teams are devoted to crisis control. These teams are trained annually using a framework known as the three Ps: people, property, product. After mail service stops due to weather, the agency's top priority is ensuring that employees are safe. Then it evaluates the health of infrastructure, such as the roads that mail carriers drive on. Finally, it decides when and how to re-open operations. If the destruction is extreme, mail addressed to the area will get sent elsewhere. In response to Hurricane Katrina in 2005, USPS redirected incoming New Orleans mail to existing mail facilities in Houston. Mail that was already processed in New Orleans facilities was moved to an upper floor so it would be protected from water damage.
F) As soon as it's safe enough to be outside, couriers (邮递员) start distributing accumulated mail on the still-accessible routes. USPS urges those without standing addresses to file change-of-address forms with their new location. After Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005, mail facilities were set up in dozens of locations across the country in the two weeks that USPS was unable to provide street delivery.
G) Every day, USPS processes, on average, 493.4 million pieces of mail—anything from postcards to Social Security checks to medicine. Spokespeople from both USPS and UPS told me all mail is important. But some mail can be extremely sensitive and timely. According to data released in January 2017, 56 percent of bills are paid online, which means that just under half of payments still rely on delivery services to be completed.
H) It can be hard to identify which parcels are carrying crucial items such as Social Security checks, but USPS and UPS try their best to prioritize sensitive material. They will coordinate with the Social Security Administration to make sure that Social Security checks reach the right people in a timely fashion. After Hurricane Florence and Hurricane Michael last fall, USPS worked with state and local election boards to make sure that absentee ballots were available and received on time.
I) Mail companies are logistics (物流) companies, which puts them in a special position to help when disaster strikes. In a 2011 USPS case study, the agency emphasized its massive infrastructure as a “unique federal asset” to be called upon in a disaster or terrorist attack. “I think we're unique as a federal agency,” USPS official Mike Swigart told me, “because we're in literally every community in this country… We're obligated to deliver to that point on a daily basis.”
J) Private courier companies, which have more dollars to spend, use their expertise in logistics to help revitalize damaged areas after a disaster. For more than a decade, FedEx has supported the American Red Cross in its effort to get emergency supplies to areas affected by disasters, both domestically and internationally. In 2012, the company distributed more than 1,200 MedPacks to Medical Reserve Corps groups in California. They also donated space for 3.1 million pounds of charitable shipping globally. Last October, the company pledged $1 million in cash and transportation support for Hurricanes Florence and Michael. UPS's charitable arm, the UPS Foundation, uses the company's logistics to help disaster-struck areas rebuild. “We realize that as a company with people, trucks, warehouses, we needed to play a larger role,” said Eduardo Martinez, the president of the UPS Foundation. The company employs its trucks and planes to deliver food, medicine, and water. The day before I spoke to Martinez in November, he had been touring the damage from Hurricane Michael in Florida with the American Red Cross. “We have an obligation to make sure our communities are thriving,” he said.
K) Rebuilding can take a long time, and even then, impressions of the disaster may still remain. Returning to a normal life can be difficult, but some small routines—mail delivery being one of them—may help residents remember that their communities are still their communities. “When they see that carrier back out on the street,” Swigart said, “that's the first sign to them that life is starting to return to normal.”
B)  甚至连美国邮政管理局也中止了邮件投递。美国邮政管理局周三上午宣布：“由于北极地区极端寒冷天气的爆发以及出于对美国邮政管理局员工人身安全的考虑，美国邮政管理局将暂停1月30日在一些邮政编码为三位数地区的邮递服务。”“周三，12个地区被列为危险地区；到周四的时候，仍有8个地区被列为危险地区。
C) 随着全球地表温度的升高，极端天气出现的可能性也随之增加。仅在2018年，野火、火山爆发、飓风、泥石流和其他自然灾害就在美国造成了至少490亿美元的损失。正如我同事范恩·纽柯克所报道的那样，波多黎各仍遭受着2017年的飓风玛丽亚所带来的经济和结构性破坏以及资源短缺等问题。 自然灾害会破坏一个社区的基础设施，扰乱系统长达数月或数年之久。然而，一些公共服务部门提醒我们，生活最终会以某种方式恢复正常。
D)  在2017年加利福尼亚州的圣罗莎发生致命的森林大火数日之后，一架无人机拍摄到了美国邮政管理局的一名员工特雷弗·史密斯驾驶着那辆熟悉的白色货车，穿过被烧毁的房屋，在受灾地区收集邮件的画面。这段视频令人震撼：这种操作很熟悉，但是这种场景看起来却像是世界末日。据美国邮政管理局国家备灾办公室的项目经理瑞伊·安·海特所说，史密斯当时为了满足一些业主的要求，去取那些没有拆封的邮件。对史密斯来说，这只是他工作中的某一天。“我像往常一样处理着常规工作，”史密斯告诉一名记者。“当我看到一个箱子在那放着，然而附近却没有房子，我检查了一下，箱子里面有需要邮寄出去的邮件。所以我们把那些邮件捡起来，然后继续工作。”
E)  美国邮政管理局有应对自然灾害的复杂的应急预案。在全国范围内，有285个应急管理团队致力于危机控制。这些团队每年都会接受培训，培训所采用的原则被称为三要素原则：人、财产和产品。如果由于天气原因导致邮政服务中止后，那么该机构的首要任务是确保员工的安全。其次是评估基础设施的运转状况，比如邮车所行驶的道路等。最后，该机构会决定何时以及如何重新开始运营。如果破坏程度非常严重，那么寄往该地区的邮件将被送往其他的地方。为了应对2005年的卡特里娜飓风，美国邮政管理局将寄往新奥尔良市的邮件改寄到休斯敦已有的邮政服务点。在新奥尔良邮政服务点已被处理过的邮件会被转移到楼上，这样可以防止邮件浸水受损。
F) 一旦可以安全外出，邮递员们就会开始在仍可通行的路线上派送积压的邮件。美国邮政管理局会敦促那些没有固定地址的人们提交带有新地址的地址变更表。 在2005年卡特里娜飓风袭击后的两周内，由于美国邮政管理局无法提供街道投递服务，全国许多地方都建立了邮政服务点。
G) 美国邮政管理局平均每天处理4.934亿封邮件——从明信片到社保支票再到药品。美国邮政管理局和联合包裹服务公司的发言人告诉我，所有的邮件都非常重要。但是有些邮件可能极其敏感，而且时效性要求也非常高。 根据2017年1月发布的数据显示，56%的账单是通过网络支付的，这意味着有将近一半的支付仍然需要依赖快递服务来完成。
H)  很难确定哪些包裹里装的是诸如社保支票等的重要物品，但美国邮政管理局和联合包裹服务公司会竭尽全力优先处理那些敏感物品。他们将与社会保障局协调，确保社保支票及时送达对的人手中。去年秋天，飓风“佛罗伦萨”和“迈克尔”过后，美国邮政管理局与各州和地方选举委员会通力合作，以确保缺席选举人选票准备妥善并及时送达。
I) 邮政公司是物流公司，当灾难发生时，这使它们处于去提供援助的特殊位置。在2011年美国邮政管理局的案例研究中，该机构强调其庞大的基础设施是“独一无二的联邦资产”，在灾难或恐怖袭击中可以动用。 “我认为我们作为一个联邦机构是独一无二的，”美国邮政管理局官员迈克·斯威格特告诉我，“因为我们几乎遍布这个国家的每一个社区……我们有义务每天都将邮件配送到指定的地点。”
J)  私人快递公司有更多的钱可以花，它们可以利用自己在物流方面的专长来帮助灾后受损地区恢复生机。十多年来，联邦快递一直努力支持美国红十字会向国内外受灾地区运送应急物资。2012年，该公司向加利福尼亚州的医疗储备队发放了1200多套医疗包。它们还向全球310万磅的慈善航运捐赠了场地。去年10月，该公司承诺为应对飓风佛罗伦萨和迈克尔提供了100万美元的现金和运输支持。联合包裹服务公司的慈善机构联合包裹基金会利用公司的物流帮助受灾地区重建。“我们意识到，作为一家拥有人力、卡车和仓库的公司，我们需要发挥更大的作用，”联合包裹基金会的总裁爱德华多·马丁内斯表示。公司雇用其卡车和飞机来运送食物、药品和水。去年11月，在我与马丁内斯交谈的前一天，他与美国红十字会（的工作人员）一起视察了佛罗里达州迈克尔飓风所造成的破坏。他说：“我们有责任确保我们的社区繁荣昌盛。”
K) 重建可能需要很长时间，即便如此，灾难造成的影响可能仍然存在。回归到正常的生活是很困难的，但是一些小的日常工作——邮件投递就是其中之一——可以帮助居民想起他们的社区仍然是自己的社区。 斯威格特说：“当他们看到邮递员又回到了大街上，这对他们来说就是生活开始回归正常的第一个迹象。”