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Topic: Do you RWAP for damage by USPS?

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Subject: Do you RWAP for damage by USPS?
Date Posted: 5/7/2011 11:16 AM ET
Member Since: 9/4/2009
Posts: 293
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I recently received a box that had been rewrapped by the USPS after some kind of liquid had met the box.  By the time I opened the package, the original box bottom was dark with seepage...no odor, no wetness, I'm thinking something like WD-40.  The sender had NO blame in this mishap, and the PO very kindly put a very small "damaged in handling" stamp on the corner.   What's the best procedure in this case?   

I think this is one of those one-in-ten-million cases...at least I hope so.  Thanks for any input.


Date Posted: 5/7/2011 11:25 AM ET
Member Since: 1/20/2009
Posts: 2,680
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I think there's a reason that there is a RWAP category for books damaged by the USPS in the first place. We're meant to use it, so PBS can keep track of the numbers of books damaged enroute. Most of these aren't the senders fault, unless they wrapped badly, but PBS still has to track them.

Date Posted: 5/7/2011 12:36 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Yes RWAP, the next screen will ask you to determine sender damage or USPS.  If there's a comment section, you can explain so show the sender couldn't have done anything differently. 

I still wish TPTB would require plastic underwrap crying  Although it wouldn't cure everything, sometimes I feel like these poor books are sent out undefended into a big bad dangerous world.

Last Edited on: 5/7/11 12:38 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/7/2011 12:37 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,485
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I will RWAP by USPS, then follow up with a PM to the sender saying I do not expect a credit and I'm marking it resolved. 

I felt that this option was there to keep statistics on the PO, to look for problem areas.  I will comment on how well their wrapping held up to the PO. 

This option also gives us a chance to get back in line for WL books.

Date Posted: 5/7/2011 8:40 PM ET
Member Since: 9/4/2009
Posts: 293
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Thanks for all replies.  I feel better about the whole situation now!smiley

Date Posted: 5/7/2011 11:11 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2010
Posts: 3,673
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Doesn't RWAP also allow the person back into his/her spot in line particularly for a wish listed book?
Date Posted: 5/8/2011 1:29 PM ET
Member Since: 2/15/2006
Posts: 284
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I recently had a book marked Damaged by USPS. I have contacted the requestor asking for details but she has not yet responded. The book was a pregnancy guide that is very small. Like maybe 3" square. I wrapped the book in plastic, and put in a manila envelope, added quite a lot in tape. Pretty much how I mail everything. I am don't want to give her back the credit as I am confident that the packaging was fine on my end. She hasn't asked for it either but I would like to hear from her what the problem was exactly.

Date Posted: 5/8/2011 9:16 PM ET
Member Since: 4/28/2009
Posts: 9,988
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Susan-- doesn't matter how well you wrap a package, the PO could still damage/misplace it.  Makes sense to me that something that small could have had problems going thru the postal system---I had a 3 inch by 3 inch square box go lost at the PO. They found it months later under a sorting table--- BUT it contained a urine sample being mailed to the drug testing lab so it was very smelly and invalid for testing when they finally found it!

Date Posted: 5/8/2011 11:21 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,087
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You are not required to return a credit when the package was damaged by the USPS. Even if the requestor of the book requests it back, in error.

Nobody has to wrap packages so that they can survive "anything". You are only required to wrap packages so that they can survive an average trip thru the mail. If you did that, your responsibility is done, and if the package is damaged in the mail, it is unfortunate, but it happens.

"inadequate packaging" means maybe you used scotch tape instead of packing tape. Or maybe you used one sheet of paper instead of two. If you wrap the package in paper (or some other standard packing material like a bubble envelope, etc) like PBS recommends, and use packing tape to seal the seams, that is plenty good enough to survive most trips thru the mail.