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USPS at it again

Sorry for the long read. On Friday October 27th I put in a pickup request for Saturday. I put the 2 packages in my mailbox early Saturday morning. My regular carrier usually comes to my house at around noon. At about 1:30 a different carrier knocks on my door and said he was there to pick up the packages. I told him I had put them in the mailbox so he checked and they were gone but I had mail so I knew my regular carrier had been by. He called the regular carrier and was told that she picked up my packages. I keep checking the tracking info for the next few days and see that the packages had never been logged in. The post office site still shows label created and waiting for pickup. On Tuesday I called the main USPS number and my local post office number. Both said to give it a few days to see if they show up. Wednesday I had to go into town so I printed the USPS page for both packages and the eBay listings and stopped at the post office. I spoke with a supervisor and was told the same thing, wait a couple days. One was a $150 item. I mentioned that since the packages were never scanned in that the insurance I had on them wouldn't cover the loss. The supervisor agreed. I then told her that if the packaged didn't show up I was going to the police station and file a stolen property report. She didn't like that. I gave her my phone number and left. Thursday morning I got a call from the postmaster and basically told him the same thing. When I got home a few hours later I looked at the USPS site and somehow the packages were magically scanned and picked up and left the local post office. Here is the kicked, the scanned in and departed date was Saturday October 28th. There has been no activity since then. Somehow on November 2nd the postmaster entered the packages as picked up on October 28th. I called the main USPS number again and told the lady what had happened. She said that there was no way he could have scanned the packages in on Nov 2nd and it show as Oct 28 on the site without actually scanning the packages. She also said that the packages should be on the way to their final location and give it until Monday to see what happens. I told her that the packages would never show up. She didn't agree. Well. as of today, there still hasn't been any activity on the USPS site. The only good thing about all of this is that since it shows that they were scanned in I'll be able to file insurance claims. The buyer of one of the item contacted me Thursday to see if I shipped the package. I explained everything and told them I would keep them updated. Hopefully I don't get negative feedback from one of the buyers. In over 25 years on eBay I've never had a negative.


  • Sorry it happened. It looks like the service for pickup requires you to be there? It would be a new service that I feel like I would eventually use.

  • jfkheatjfkheat Posts: 2,716 ✭✭✭✭✭

    The pickup service does not require you to be there. All you have to do to have packages picked up is go to the USPS site click on SEND and then SCHEDULE A PICKUP. Then just fill in all the info it asks for. You have several options for where the package will be, mailbox, on porch, front door, back door, etc. Just leave the package and go about whatever you have planned for the day. They are supposed to scan the packages as soon as they pick them up.
    That said, I was there.

  • JoeBanzaiJoeBanzai Posts: 11,109 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Sorry you're having problems.

    I live in a rural area, but I always drive the 15-20 minutes into town and hand the packages to the clerk and watch them being scanned.

    Hope your problem resolves itself, I just had 2 cards arrive (eBay standard envelope) one week after they were scanned as delivered.

    P.S. I delivered for FedEx one Christmas season (nightmare) and you wouldn't believe how many USPS packages I delivered and how the packages are handled and tracked. That's one of the reasons I do as much of the work as possible with my items.

    2013,14 and 15 Certificate Award Winner Harmon Killebrew Master Set and Master Topps Set
  • I'm pretty sure that it is impossible for any USPS employee to back-date a scan. The scanners are all GPS / Cellular oriented and would go by that - no way to change that info. So, If the scans show an acceptance date of the 28th, than that is definitely when they were scanned. If the carrier scanned them at pickup, that info is uploaded to the main system once it is able to connect to it (if in a location with bad cellular signal, that info can be delayed uploading to the main system).

    As far as tracking not updating since the initial scan, the USPS has been having intermittent issues with the tracking / online services for the last few weeks, so that could explain why the tracking was not updating online. The internal tracking would still show the progress if there is any.

    And from experience, some packages just don't get scanned along the way for some reason or another (sorting machine malfunctions, obscured barcode, etc), but they pop up again once they hit their destination city.

    Hopefully your packages are delivered as intended soon...

  • jfkheatjfkheat Posts: 2,716 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I ship quite a few packages each month. I have had a few packages not show as being accepted for 2 or 3 days but never 5 days. The ones that don't show for a couple days always so being scanned somewhere along the route within a few days. Both of these packages are going from South Carolina to North Carolina so it should be a 2 or 3 day trip.
    As far as back-dating a scan, I just find it odd that a couple hours after the postmaster called me the packages show up as being scanned 6 days after they were supposed to be entered into the system.
    As of a few minutes ago there is still no more activity.

  • RufussCkingstonRufussCkingston Posts: 1,444 ✭✭✭✭

    It's possible that the handheld that the carrier was using didn't have a signal, and thus the unit needed to be uploaded when it got back, but for some reason the unit was not synced till 11/2, possibly a different one was used by your carrier since then, and of course the scan data once synced shows that the carrier scanned it on the 28th at "pickup". As for the delay in the departure "scan", maybe the local PO is having data transfer issues as well and the Post Master noticed there needed to be a data dump or something that day you spoke with him/her.

    But for the most part, being that in my hood packages get stolen out of mailboxes or front yards, I'd never leave anything outside for a blind pickup. Take it to the USPS office and get a receipt of your drop off! If you're "lazy" (even if offered as a USPS service), then you open yourself up to these types of shenanigans!

  • jfkheatjfkheat Posts: 2,716 ✭✭✭✭✭

    The package should have been scanned at least 4 to 5 more times since it was "picked up". 2 times at the next sorting facility, 2 times at the buyer's local post office and 1 time when it was delivered.

  • sayheywyosayheywyo Posts: 435 ✭✭✭

    FYI.... there is a manual entry feature on the scanner (IMD). The Postmaster can run a report in RIMS.

    The Manual Entry Report provides the user with a report listing the labels that were entered into an IMD
    using the Manual Input option. The report includes only the manually entered labels for a single Location
    (System ID). The fields displayed on the report include:
     Label ID
     Route ID
     Event Date Time
     User ID of person making the entry
    The Manual Entry Report provides the following search fields:
     Label ID
     Start Date (default to today’s date)
     End Date (default to today’s date)

  • The first thing that came to my mind is that the postmaster you spoke to was being a bro. The fact that you spoke to them and explained that you couldn't use insurance without the package being scanned in and that they took care of that for you. Not sure how realistic that is, but it sounds possible.

  • jfkheatjfkheat Posts: 2,716 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @theminneapoliskid said:
    The first thing that came to my mind is that the postmaster you spoke to was being a bro. The fact that you spoke to them and explained that you couldn't use insurance without the package being scanned in and that they took care of that for you. Not sure how realistic that is, but it sounds possible.

    I kind of agree with that. He is also trying to cover his mail carrier's tail since I told them I was going to file a police report. I'm still planning to file that report.

  • addicted2ebayaddicted2ebay Posts: 2,090 ✭✭✭✭

    Probably best to skip that service in the future and take it to the post for scanning it seems. I’ve never used a pick up service personally.

  • thedutymon11thedutymon11 Posts: 625 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November 7, 2023 9:29PM

    @addicted2ebay said:
    . I’ve never used a pick up service personally.

    Same here, I either go to the Post Office (2 Miles) or watch for my Postal lady and just hand her my packages at least 2-3 days a week (Retired, I can do this!). In 24 years other than maybe a few low dollar items missing, no major problems. But the stories of being Ripped Off by E-Bay sellers are at least 1/2 dozen I could tell you!
    Plus my Postal Lady scans them when I hand them, so a lot of times, I package them the same day as the order, and most are scanned that day as well, My shipping times are awesome! Sometimes 2 days for delivery, and I've actually had some arrive the next day!

    But I think she gets a little irritated when I receive 10-15 Comic Book packages, especially when I have 3-4 Medium Flat Rate Boxes the same day (Got back into Comics last couple years), she dedicates a Tote for my stuff.



  • jfkheatjfkheat Posts: 2,716 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I live in the country. It is 40 minutes or so round trip to the post office so that is not going to happen every time I have a couple packages to ship.

  • pab1969pab1969 Posts: 1,053 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @jfkheat said:
    I live in the country. It is 40 minutes or so round trip to the post office so that is not going to happen every time I have a couple packages to ship.

    I am sorry this has happened to you again. I would make the 40-minute drive to avoid the aggravation of USPS losing my packages if it happened to me just one time. If you sell cards as income, you can claim the miles driven to the post office as a tax write off. I have never used the pickup service and I never will. I take all of my packages to the post office, wait in line to have my packages scanned and have a receipt handed to me. I never had an issue. Over the years I have gotten to know the postal employees very well and they are friendly and helpful.

  • craig44craig44 Posts: 10,241 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I hear you about being off the beaten path, but I would second the poster above who mentioned making that 40 minute drive. unless they are low value items you dont care about losing. I would imagine you have spent well over 40 minutes of time stressing about this situation (as would I)

    George Brett, Bobby Orr and Terry Bradshaw.

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