US Postal Service in Maine braces for record holiday rush – WMTW Portland

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The U.S. Postal Service said it has made changes as it readies for a record holiday rush.
Postal Service officials gave WMTW News 8 a look inside its processing facility in Scarborough.
The nearly 475,000 square-foot facility has more than 500 employees working around the clock.
The Postal Service has added 45 new facilities, 112 new mail sorting machines and 40,000 additional seasonal workers nationwide as it expects to handle more than 50 million packages a day.
Expected volume during the holiday season is expected to increase 35% compared to last year as online ordering grows.
“COVID definitely changed the way people shop and that changed the way people use the mail even further,” USPS spokesman Steve Doherty said.
The Scarborough machine has two smart processing machines that are operating 24/7, according to Doherty.
“We’re getting more and more packages in the system. We’re kind of re-tooling and getting ready for that and these new machines will process up to 12 times faster the manual processors we used before,” Doherty said.
Officials said after the pandemic kept many workers at home a year ago, they are increasing staffing levels this year.

“We do have quite a few more employees than we did last year,” plant manager Michale Mitchell said.
However, Postal Service officials said they still need to hire 85 people for the Scarborough facility before December.

“We’ve learned a lesson from last holiday with the surge of packages that we received and we’re putting all of our assets and all of our people in place to ensure success this year and beyond the holiday,” Doherty said.

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