Now (effective May 1st 2009) we support both UPS (United Parcel Service) and USPS (United States Postal Service) as safe shipping methods (as long as the shipping destination is a residential address).UPS does not irradiate any of their mail and USPS only irradiates mail sent to government offices.
Why does the USPS irradiate mail?
To make the mail safe from biohazards in a timely fashion, the USPS began irradiating mail destined for government offices in specified ZIP Codes (202, 203, 204 and 205) in the Washington, D.C. area. Irradiation destroys bacteria and viruses that could be present in the mail.
What are the dangers of mail irradiation?
Mail irradiation can damage plastics and make paper brittle. Mail irradiation is a technique that is used on mail addressed to certain government agencies to ensure that packages and letters do not contain harmful bacteria. Postal workers that use mail irradiation equipment are kept safe by strict controls throughout the process.
Where can I find information about Irradiated mail?
The U.S. Postal Service and the General Services Administration provide mail management information relating to irradiated mail on their web sites. How can I tell if my agency receives irradiated mail?
What happens when you send a letter with radiation?
The beam penetrates deep into the mail to destroy viruses and bacteria—like anthrax. Mail irradiation can also be used on thicker postal materials like letter trays and packages. The ionizing radiation used in the mail irradiation process can cause chemical changes in paper.
What happens when you irradiate mail?
Irradiating mail can make it dry, brittle or discolored. In October 2001, the infectious disease anthrax was found in mail sent to several news agencies and the offices of two United States Senators. Anthrax is a species of bacteria (scientific name: Bacillus anthracis) that forms spores, which when inhaled, can make people sick.
Why are radiation levels monitored at mail irradiation facilities?
Radiation levels are closely monitored at mail irradiation facilities to ensure that workers are safe. The facilities have thick concrete or lead lined walls to shield employees and visitors from radiation.
What is irradiated mail?
Irradiated mail is passed through a high energy beam of electrons or x-rays. Irradiation sterilizes mail; it does not make mail radioactive. Mail irradiation can damage plastics and make paper brittle.
Why do we use irradiation?
Mail irradiation is a technique that is used on mail addressed to certain government agencies to ensure that packages and letters do not contain harmful bacteria. Postal workers that use mail irradiation equipment are kept safe by strict controls throughout the process.
Does irradiating mail make it radioactive?
Irradiation also might turn plastics brown and warp CD cases or other plastic storage containers. Even though it causes physical changes, ir radiating mail does not make the mail radioactive.
What happens if you irradiate mail?
The contents of irradiated mail may be needed to conduct agency business and thereafter maintained in agency files for a period of time until their scheduled disposition. If the information is illegible, it will not be available to the agency. If the documents are so dry that they crumble or break apart, they will not last as long as the other contents of the file.
What to do if your records are only partially legible?
If the records are only partly legible or illegible, you may need to determine how to acquire replacement copies, such as asking the sender to resubmit using a transmission method other than the U.S. mail.
What happens if you print address labels on paper?
The printing on pages may be distorted or offset onto adjacent pages. If the tape is affixed to address labels, the address may be illegible. Materials other than paper may also be affected. Plastics and inks may melt and fuse.
What are the signs of irradiation?
Evidence of irradiation includes weakened or discolored (yellowed) envelopes, visibility of adhesive through the paper, and transfer of inks.
What does it mean when paper is weakened?
Paper is weakened and may appear to have been aged, with discoloration (e.g., yellowing), and brittleness. Pages may break, crumble, or fuse to other pages. Documents bound with glue may have loose pages. The printing on pages may be distorted or offset onto adjacent pages.
Do permanent records need to be kept in the National Archives?
When permanent records are transferred to the National Archives of the United States, NARA will take appropriate preservation measures to ensure their continued availability. The agency should notify NARA at the time of transfer if the records have been irradiated.
Can you discard a damaged federal record?
No. NARA approval is not needed to discard damaged original Federal records; exact duplicates are an acceptable replacement for damaged temporary and permanent Federal records.
Why is the USPS irradiating mail?
Postal Service (USPS) and government officials recognized the need to improve the safety of the mail. To make the mail safe from biohazards in a timely fashion, the USPS began irradiating mail destined for government offices in specified ZIP Codes (202, 203, 204 and 205) in the Washington, D.C. area. Irradiation destroys bacteria and viruses that could be present in the mail. Irradiation began in the fall of 2001; shortly thereafter federal workers began reporting health symptoms they believed were related to handling irradiated mail.
When did irradiation begin?
Irradiation began in the fall of 2001 ; shortly thereafter federal workers began reporting health symptoms they believed were related to handling irradiated mail. These reports came to the attention of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) when it received requests for health hazard evaluations from the U.S.
Does NIOSH detect airborne contaminants?
NIOSH did not detect airborne contaminants above occupational exposure limits. Employees reported skin irritation, eye, nose, and throat irritation, headaches, and nausea. These symptoms may have resulted from a combination of various factors, including suboptimal environmental humidity, drying effects on the skin of handling irradiated paper, …
Is the CDC responsible for Section 508?
CDC is not responsible for Section 508 compliance (accessibility) on other federal or private website.
Does linking to a non-federal website constitute an endorsement by CDC?
Linking to a non-federal website does not constitute an endorsement by CDC or any of its employees of the sponsors or the information and products presented on the website.
How to keep fragile items from shifting?
Use a sturdy box with enough room to add cushioning for fragile items and to prevent items from shifting. Tape your box so that it closes flat on all sides and reinforce the flaps with 2-inch wide packing tape. If you’re reusing a box, make sure all old logos, shipping labels, and addresses are covered or blacked out.
What happens if you drop a package in the mail box?
NOTE: If you put a large package in your mailbox for pickup service, the carrier will leave it. If you drop it in a blue collection box or Post Office lobby mail slot, it will be returned to you.
How long is a USPS package?
In most cases, packages may not be more than 108 inches in total length and girth. (130 inches for USPS Retail Ground ® .)
What to do if you re-use a box?
If you’re reusing a box, make sure all old logos, shipping labels, and addresses are covered or blacked out.
How much can you insure a package?
For particularly valuable items, you can insure your package for up to $5,000. You can also purchase a delivery confirmation service such as Certified Mail ® to verify your package’s arrival. Show More
How long does it take for the post office to pick up packages?
If you want your packages picked up at a specific time, for a fee, the Post Office will pick up your shipment within a scheduled 2-hour period.
Is it free to pick up a package from USPS?
Package Pickup during regular mail delivery is free regardless of the number of items scheduled for pickup. USPS usually picks up your package on the next delivery day or another designated day.