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      08-17-2010, 01:11 AM   #1
twoturboz
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Question about USPS mail trucks.

Alright. So I've noticed that every time the mailman pulls up to the next mail box, he turns off his truck and gets out then turns it back on 10 seconds later.

His cranks sound like shit since its being turned on and off so much and I'm pretty sure all the other mailmen do this.

So I read somewhere that the average gas consumption on a vehicle turning it on is equivalent to letting your motor idle for 2 minutes. So if he's just getting out of the car for 10 seconds wouldn't it be better to just leave the damn thing on gas consumption wise? Not to mention the ignition wouldn't sound so fucked up from turning it on and off hundreds of times every day.

Anyways, this might seem minuscule to many but I've been curious for awhile here. I mean, if EVERY mailman changed their policy how much gas would be saved? How many more miles/months would the truck fleet be operational before needing to repair/replace the truck? Could millions of mail trucks doing something so simple save the USPS millions of dollars? Would this translate into cheaper operating costs and stamp costs?
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      08-17-2010, 07:27 AM   #2
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I think it has something to do with the security issue of leaving the vehicle running with potentially sensitive mail in the back.
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      08-17-2010, 08:44 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twoturboz View Post

Anyways, this might seem minuscule to many but I've been curious for awhile here. I mean, if EVERY mailman changed their policy how much gas would be saved? How many more miles/months would the truck fleet be operational before needing to repair/replace the truck? Could millions of mail trucks doing something so simple save the USPS millions of dollars? Would this translate into cheaper operating costs and stamp costs?
While I suspect it may have something to do with what the above poster mentioned, there was an interesting article/report about UPS changing their routes so drivers pretty much only had to make right hand turns - lefts were avoided as much as possible, and the amount of gas and money saved was ridiculous. It was a few years old but I'll see if I can find the link...

Edit: that wasn't very hard http://abcnews.go.com/WNT/story?id=3005890&page=1

Quote:
UPS trucks drove 2.5 billion miles last year, but the company says its package flow technology combined with right-turn routes saved 28,541,472 million miles, and three million gallons of fuel. The company puts almost 92,000 trucks on the road every day. But without its efficiency and right-turn routes, it would have to send out an additional 1,100 trucks.
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      08-17-2010, 09:29 AM   #4
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Good observationn OP.

It wouldn't be too hard to have one key be the ignition key as it is now, and have another key that locks the vehicle down from being stolen. That way you can have the truck always on, and just remove the lock key every time you need to exit the vehicle for a few seconds. Maybe that's not possible, I dunno...
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      08-17-2010, 09:32 AM   #5
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I've heard the same thing OP, but I don't know. You'd figure with UPS saving money on cutting truck idling time combined with cars in Europe now implementing start/stop technology that shut the engine off when idling, maybe it doesn't use so much gas to start up an engine.
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      08-17-2010, 10:25 AM   #6
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Sounds like you need to write UPS with a proposal for the solution... could be worth some serious money. Do it before I do it... actually my friends father is a major higher up at UPS... hmm....
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      08-17-2010, 11:41 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoosyJoos View Post
Sounds like you need to write UPS with a proposal for the solution... could be worth some serious money. Do it before I do it... actually my friends father is a major higher up at UPS... hmm....
Just to clarify I'm talking about USPS and not UPS but hey I guess it applies to both.
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      08-17-2010, 02:51 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by twoturboz View Post
Just to clarify I'm talking about USPS and not UPS but hey I guess it applies to both.
Every UPS truck I can remember gets left running while the guy delivers the package. Another thing I've noticed lately about them lately is that unless your package absolutely requires a signature, they don't even ring the doorbell anymore. Anyway to save precious $$ I guess...
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      08-17-2010, 03:15 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BTM View Post
Every UPS truck I can remember gets left running while the guy delivers the package. Another thing I've noticed lately about them lately is that unless your package absolutely requires a signature, they don't even ring the doorbell anymore. Anyway to save precious $$ I guess...
I happen to know UPS protocol (don't ask me why, but I do. )
Trucks off. Doorbell ring or door knock if bell not found. If you note otherwise, driver is not following protocol.
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      08-17-2010, 03:44 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stickypaws View Post
I happen to know UPS protocol (don't ask me why, but I do. )
Trucks off. Doorbell ring or door knock if bell not found. If you note otherwise, driver is not following protocol.
I have a package delivered almost every week and they never knock anymore.

I noticed this started happening about a year or more ago.
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      08-17-2010, 03:47 PM   #11
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My mail person also turns off his/her truck when exiting for package delivery. As others have said, it's so the stupid thing doesn't get stolen.
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      08-17-2010, 06:18 PM   #12
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looks like i should invent a little door lock or something....
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      08-17-2010, 07:48 PM   #13
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My UPS driver always shuts the engine off and always rings the bell, even though he leaves the package on the front porch. The USPS mail carrier just leaves the package and then hops back into his little mail truck, starts it up and off to the next mailbox. I know the mail carriers hate to get off the seat to deliver a package that will not fit in the mailbox, to the front door. Pretty lazy. I wonder if these rural carriers get paid the same amount as the urban carriers that actually have to walk and deliver the mail in a city?
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      08-17-2010, 11:00 PM   #14
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I think the simplest to do the outer door locking mechanism would be with an RFID lock with the chip infused into the employee's ID. That would cut down on a lot of time compared to a traditional key system.
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      08-18-2010, 12:00 AM   #15
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When I still lived with my parents my Mom ordered all of the non-perishable food online amongst other things. We had packages coming literally every business day and I never once saw a UPS truck turned off for the delivery. USPS always turned them off for the mail delivery.
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      08-18-2010, 12:20 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Los Angeles View Post
I have a package delivered almost every week and they never knock anymore.

I noticed this started happening about a year or more ago.
Must be a recent Teamster's contract revision. Don't have to knock or ring in exchange for less cost of living increase %.
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      08-18-2010, 07:11 AM   #17
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that ups article was very interesting
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