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Increase in USPS damage?

     
8:24 pm on Mar 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Anybody see a spike in USPS damage this year? I went from virtually no problem the last couple years, to now being on about the 8th destroyed package this year, and we're not even 1/4 through yet. I'm not one for conspiracies, but seems a bit of a coincidence that it started right after the Saturday delivery announcement.
8:42 pm on Mar 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Yes, sub-contractors might be the reason...
9:45 pm on Mar 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Have they increased the use of subs as part of their strategy? Interestingly enough, the one we had today had the remains returned by FedEx... so I assume that means it was stomped while in their care.
10:25 pm on Mar 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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We ship out over 2000 packages per month and things have been fine for us.

We are still going to look into offering FedEx to give our customers another option.
2:58 am on Mar 13, 2013 (gmt 0)

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I haven't noticed any increase in USPS damage. Just make sure you don't put Fragile stickers on the outside of your package, as it then becomes a football. The less attention you can draw to your packages, the better.
11:14 pm on Mar 13, 2013 (gmt 0)

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My unique problem is that we sell many things that are long. Nobody likes handling that stuff. They're supposed to walk it through, but idiots throw it on the belts, then it gets caught and 2000 pounds of stuff pile up behind it. No box is going to stop that. Short of putting everything in 8" PVC pipes, that's about the only way it would be guaranteed to stop. And that would cost a fortune. But still, most stuff has done OK, until this year. Just seems like they've decided to completely stop caring. Which makes no sense, since they're the ones that have to spend a half hour un-jamming the conveyor. Not very bright.
11:50 pm on Mar 13, 2013 (gmt 0)

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@dpd1, have you tried the heavy duty kraft tubes or is that too expensive as well? I know the length is out of the ordinary.
12:24 am on Mar 14, 2013 (gmt 0)

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They're supposed to walk it through, but idiots throw it on the belts...

Walk it through? The average APWU "idiot" (your term) makes $19/hr plus benefits (healthcare, retirement, etc). If he unloads a long box at the sorting facility and has to "walk it through", up/down/around sorting conveyors and fork lift trucks, to one of hundreds of different outgoing trucks, then we're not paying enough in Oversize charges.

I'll ask my cousin (an APWU idiot working night-shift at a New York SCF) if he's supposed to walk oversized packages through. It'll give the guys something to laugh about during coffee break.
1:28 am on Mar 14, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Hey man, this is coming from a guy that supervises at the nearest main sorting facility himself, when I talked to him... Quote: "They're supposed to take the longer stuff around, that's why we add on the dimension balloon fee... but lots of times guys don't, and they throw it on the conveyor".

I didn't just make that up. I don't care who they are or what they get paid. I don't get paid nearly as much as I'd like, but I still do my job right. When the dimensional fee is added on, I and the customer are paying considerably more for them to NOT destroy it. The conveyor systems are designed to accept a certain max dimension. Obviously if you put something twice the width of the conveyor on there, you don't have to be a genius to know what's going to happen when it hits the first drop angle turn. Obviously they aren't going to hand walk just one item at a time. I assume they use carts or something.

If you've seen any of my other posts, you know that I've actually defended the service many times. But I think it's a bit of a coincidence that my damage rate quadruples right after they announce tons of people will get less overtime. That's not my fault.

Yeah, we tried the tubes. It's very expensive and they still manage to crush them, in any service I tried.
1:57 am on Mar 14, 2013 (gmt 0)

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I haven't had any problems with damage. But this past holiday season, delivery problems tripled over previous holiday seasons. Every time the phone rang, I would shudder. Just lots of mistakes - shipments scanned Delivered, but missing or delivered to the wrong address; shipments scanned Delivery Attempted, then disappear, when there was no reason not to deliver in the first place; basically anything you could think of happened at least once. It seems to have returned to normal though - for the most part. I really think they're cutting staff, pensions, benefits, anything they can do to reduce expenses. For awhile there at the holidays, I was seriously considering switching to strictly Fedex. I'm a really small merchant. I couldn't imagine how many problems large merchants were having.
2:57 am on Mar 22, 2013 (gmt 0)

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I just contacted an ecommerce site that's affiliate of Amazon to tell them that I'm tired of my USPS delivery person not bothering to deliver packages but making me drive downtown, stand in line, and pick it up myself. FedEx and UPS leave it at the back porch; USPS doesn't even get out of their little Jeep. They just write up the pink slip and put it into the mailbox with my mail. Got a note back that they've had so much trouble with USPS that they are not going to use them any more. I'll pay an extra $5 not to have to go downtown!
 

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