parcels accepted for mailing. Extraneous information
such as order numbers, which can be confused with
ZIP Codes, are not permitted next to or immediately
under the last line of the address.
Name at least four types of acceptable
cushioning materials that may be used when a
parcel is prepared for mailing.
What two types of tape are NOT acceptable
for the reinforcement or the closure of
What type of tape is widely used for closing
and sealing packages, but is not adequate for
Q3-10. What is the requirement of metal straps if
metal strapping is used for closing or the
reinforcement of packages?
Q-3-11. When an easy or average load parcel is
prepared for mailing, staples may be used
provided the staples are spaced at least what
maximum distance apart?
Q3-12. At what maximum distance should markings
on packages be clearly seen by postal
Now turn to appendix 1 to check your answers.
THE ZIP CODE SYSTEM
Learning Objective: Learn the breakdown
and assignment of ZIP Codes.
Earlier in chapter 1 we discussed the National
Five-Digit ZIP Code and Post Office Directory. Now
lets take a look at the ZIP Code system and what it
means to the Military Postal Service.
ZIP Codes enable the USPS to achieve greater
accuracy, speed, and economy in the processing and
delivery of mail. As a military postal clerk, you can do
your customers a service by encouraging them to use
their correct ZIP Code in the return address of all mail.
If a ZIP Code is used as a part of the return address, the
person(s) to whom they are writing will have their
correct ZIP Code when replying. ZIP coded mail can
be processed quickly by automated equipment,
whereas all non-ZIP coded mail must be processed
manually upon initial entry into the USPS channels. If
the mail is ZIP coded, the result is fewer handlings and
faster, more accurate delivery. Thus, using ZIP Codes
provides your customers with better service.
ZIP CODE DESCRIPTION
The ZIP (zone improvement plan) Code is a
numerical code that identifies areas within the United
States and its territories for purposes of simplifying the
distribution of mail by both the military and USPS.
The first digit of the ZIP Code divides the country into
10 large groups of states numbered from 0 in the North
East to 9 in the Far West. Within these areas, each state
is divided into an average of 10 smaller geographic
areas identified by the second and third digits of the
ZIP Code. The fourth and fifth digits identify a local
delivery area. The four-digit add-on enables a further
sortation within the local delivery office. The first two
digits of the four-digit add-on denote a delivery sector
for the mail carrier that will make the actual delivery.
This sector may be several blocks, a group of streets,
several office buildings, or even a small geographic
area. The last two digits of the four-digit add-on
denotes a delivery segment that might be one floor of
an office building, one side of street, a firm, a suite, a
post office box, a group of boxes, or other specific
geographic location. See figures 3-6 and 3-7 for
examples of a breakdown of a ZIP Code.
SHIPS ZIP CODES
All ships are assigned their own unique ZIP + 4
code. This ZIP code policy includes the following
U.S. Navy ships, both active and reserve
U.S. Coast Guard
Military Sealift Command
National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Ships are assigned ZIP Codes based on their
number of crewmembers and/or their geographic
All ships receive their mail through one of three
gateways. Their assigned FPO address depends on the
homeport of the ship. Ships homeported on the East
Coast (Atlantic Fleet) are assigned an FPO address of
AE (Europe) or AA (Americas), with Charleston, SC,
as the dividing point. All ships homeported south of
Charleston, SC are assigned an FPO AA address. All