Nothing, not even the COVID-19 pandemic, will stop Santa from delivering toys to good boys and girls on Christmas Eve — and nothing will stop the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) from tracking the big guy's flying sleigh.
This year, NORAD launched its 2020 Santa-tracker website, which will be updated regularly throughout the season with new holiday-themed games, music and videos.
The Santa tracker is live now, and can be watched live at any time on Christmas Eve at NORADSanta.org.
"Thanks to the dedicated men and women who keep a watchful eye over North American airspace 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, NORAD tracks everything that flies in and around North America. On December 24, we also have the special mission of tracking and escorting Santa,” said Major-General (Maj.-Gen.) Eric Kenny, Commander of the Canadian NORAD Region. “Utilizing the North Warning System's powerful radar and satellite systems, we are able to see into the North better than ever, allowing us to track Santa more precisely, ensuring he has a safe trip through North American airspace.”
Visitors to the site will be able to track Santa's progress as he makes his rounds to homes across the globe.
Last month, NORAD said that it would still be tracking Santa this holiday season despite COVID-19 staffing cutbacks. Though the command's Santa Tracker Hotline, 1-877-Hi-NORAD, will still be active on Christmas Eve, not every child will get to speak to a live volunteer and will get a pre-recorded message instead.
According to the Associated Press, NORAD has been tracking Santa every year since 1955, when Col. Harry Shoup of the Continental Air Defense Command took a call from a child who dialed a misprinted department store telephone number looking for Santa.