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Postal Service Announces First Day of FedEx Express, To Speed Delivery

Friday, August 31, 2001

Press release from the issuing company

WASHINGTON – Today is the first full day for the U.S. Postal Service/FedEx Express air transportation agreement. "Nine weeks ago the Postal Service and FedEx Express began an aggressive activation period of the transportation network with operations and systems tests. As a result, we are ready to go," said Paul Vogel, Postal Service vice president, Network Operations Management. Announced January 12, the historic air transportation agreement gives the Postal Service shared access to the world's largest air cargo airline – one with industry-leading reliability and consistency. The single contract with FedEx Express replaces a number of dedicated contracts with multiple companies for the transportation of mail by air. None of the former contracts – individually or as a whole – could offer the scope, market reach, systems capabilities or financial stability the Postal Service now has with FedEx Express. The Postal Service will pay about $6.3 billion over seven years for shared access to the FedEx Express national air transportation network, saving about $1 billion in air transportation costs. "The criteria for service responsive air transportation are: an extensive network reach, advanced IT capabilities, stable costs, and consistent performance. We get all of this with the FedEx contract," said Vogel. Under the terms of the agreement, FedEx Express will provide 443,000 cubic feet of transportation space on its air fleet by day and carry 250,000 pounds of mail at night. The Postal Service will use the day network for the transportation of Priority and First-Class Mail and will use the night network for the transportation of Express Mail. In addition to the anticipated increase in reliability and consistency of service, the Postal Service's new air transportation network contract will reach more cities than its former dedicated system did. As a result, the Postal Service's Express Mail overnight network will more than double, going from 50 to 116 air stops. The day network, which will carry Priority Mail and First-Class Mail, will triple, expanding from 26 to 84 air stops. Taking into account the full range of transportation options available to the Postal Service – rail, surface, commercial passenger airlines, and the new air cargo contract – more communities will be able to get Express Mail overnight guarantee service. They are also likely to get more consistent Priority Mail 2-3 day service. The Postal Service will use its Surface-Air Management System (SAMS) to manage the routing of mail to the different transportation options. SAMS gives the Postal Service the ability to assign a unique dispatch and routing tag to each tray, sack, or container, replacing the Air Contract Data Collection System (ACDS) with upgrade-ready software. It also has the ability to assign surface routes, and manage the capacity of the first leg of transportation by splitting out mail by class and to track manifests online. This is a significant milestone in the Postal Service's building of its information platform that could lead to the future ability of business customers to track where their mail is within the postal system.




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