THE OMBUDSMAN ALERT: U.S. Postal Service delivers “un-trackable” tracking numbers!

BY DR. LOUIS ALPERT 
Ombudsman

The Ombudsman Alert mailed out two separate packages on April 3 and April 16, 2018 to Plainview, New York and Saint George, Utah, respectively, purchasing tracking numbers on each package to trace their deliveries to the recipients.

On each of the receipts given by the local post office, along with the printed tracking number, a 800 number “800-222-1811” was included to enable the sender to track the package until it reached its destination. In previous years this system was reliably effective when the sender called the 800 number from his or her home phone and entered the tracking number to initiate the tracking process.

The sender could periodically call this 800 number , which would “recognize” the sender and give the message: “Are you calling about tracking number ending in ‘____.'” If the sender answered “yes,” he or she would be given an update on where the package was located, thus “tracking” said package.

Unfortunately, this useful service has now been drastically downgraded so that a “yes” answer to this question merely results in the following recorded answer: “There is no status available at this time for this tracking number.”

This recording is repeated on each and every day following the mailing, and ironically, Ombudsman Alert was able to ascertain the successful final delivery by actually calling the recipient at the same time this “worthless” recording was still being sent!

In subsequent discussions with local postmasters here in Rockland county, Ombudsman Alert was told that this unfortunate mishandling of the tracking process was well-known to them and numerous complaints had been lodged to no avail!

The Ombudsman Alert characterizes this practice as a true “ripoff” of the consumer and calls upon our local Congresswoman Nita Lowey to remedy this unfortunate failure of duty by the U.S. Postal Service.

Please address all comments and questions to: editor@rocklandcountytimes.com.