Last year, the Mail Recovery Center in Atlanta, Ga. - the Postal Service's "last opportunity" to deliver or return valuable mail - received 53.4 million pieces of mail that were "undeliverable."
Of these, approximately 10.6 million mail pieces had "possible value," and the MRC delivered or returned almost half of these pieces. The rest either had no value or didn't have information the MRC could use to determine senders or receivers.
Processing centers, delivery units and National Distribution Centers send to the Mail Recovery Center undeliverable and non-returnable Express Mail, Priority Mail, First-Class Mail, packages and "loose-in-the-mail" items. Some of the mail pieces not sent to the center include standard letters and flats, magazines, post cards, catalogs, advertising mail, phone books and hazardous materials.
Sometimes, high value mail - despite the Mail Recovery Center's best efforts - goes unclaimed. Postal customers who address mail should make certain the address is correct and complete with a return address. This way, it won't end up in the Mail Recovery Center as undeliverable mail.
Customers should file a Mail Recovery Search form for missing articles. Contact your local Post Office or call (800) ASK-USPS (275-8777) to request the form and further instructions.
Mr. Zip's tip
The Postal Service delivered 168 billion pieces of mail in 2011 - facilitating $10 trillion in commerce.
Debra Mitchell is a spokeswoman for U.S. Postal Service.