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MDD Load Truck feature

In October 2017, the Postal Service enabled a new feature on the Mobile Delivery Device (MDD) called Load Truck.  This feature involves letter carriers scanning their packages as they load their vehicle and the MDD provides them with visual and audible information regarding the delivery sequence number of the package and a numbered section (1 through 6) of the vehicle in which the package should be placed.  At the time this new feature was released, USPS also distributed a standup talk to delivery units which stated not all carriers will need to use the Load Truck feature.  The standup talk stated, “Regular carriers and others familiar with the route layout will probably not need the feature.”

In addition to using the Load Truck feature of the MDD, the Postal Service envisioned carriers unfamiliar with routes using the Package Lookahead feature that was introduced to the MDD one year earlier.  Through the MDD screen, Package Lookahead provides carriers with a manifest of all packages assigned to their route for the day, and as each package is delivered the manifest is updated to indicate it, thus providing which packages have yet to be delivered for the rest of the route. 

Earlier this year the Postal Service switched gears from its previous messaging that only carriers unfamiliar with routes should use the Load Truck feature, and made it a mandatory daily routine for all city delivery letter carriers as they load their vehicles.  Almost immediately, NALC headquarters and the 15 regional offices began receiving many questions from letter carriers and local union representatives regarding this change.  Some reported their local managers told them they could not separate their parcels in delivery sequence as allowed by and provided for in section 322.31 of Handbook M-41, City Delivery Carriers Duties and Responsibilities.  We also heard reports of managers not allowing letter carriers to reverse a letter in their letter separation, to indicate where they have a SPR too large to be cased, as provided for in section 225.22 of Handbook M-41.  They were told to only use the Package Lookahead feature instead.

After receiving those reports, NALC has met several times with officials at USPS headquarters to determine their position on these issues.  The Postal Service states the only directive being issued to the area and district levels is that all carriers should use the Load Truck feature by scanning each parcel and placing them into the numbered section of the truck indicated on the MDD.  USPS plans to use the scan to improve customer visibility soon. That is it; all rules and regulations regarding loading and delivery of parcels must still be adhered to.

If a letter carrier is instructed to load or deliver their parcels in a manner inconsistent with the procedures outlined in Handbook M-41, he or she should follow those instructions but inform a local union representative for further investigation.