Winter weather

Severe winter storms have brought snow, freezing rain and bitter temperatures to many parts of the nation this week, resulting in widespread power outages.

Almost 3 million customers were without power Feb. 17 in Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi, more than 200,000 more in four Appalachian states, and nearly that many in the Pacific Northwest, the Associated Press reported.

The latest storm front is expected to bring snow and ice to East Texas, Arkansas and other areas before moving to the Northeast on Feb. 18. Winter storm watches are in effect from Baltimore to Boston.

The usps.com Service Alerts and Newsroom sections have the latest updates on service disruptions and operational adjustments.

Waste not

The Postal Service has launched an effort to encourage more customers to recycle Priority Mail boxes and other packaging products.

Customers are sometimes unaware that many USPS products — stamped with the words “Please Recycle” along with the universal chasing-arrows recycling symbol — are made from recyclable materials and shouldn’t be discarded with other waste.

To encourage more customers to recycle, the Postal Service has joined forces with How2Recycle, a consumer-oriented package labeling system that uses Federal Trade Commission guidance to help customers properly recycle.

How2Recycle labels communicate to customers precise instructions, including how to prep for recycling, the type of recyclable material, such as plastic or paper, and the packaging format, such as bottles and boxes, to make recycling easier.

Cereal boxes, soup cans and other pantry items often carry How2Recycle guidance.

The How2Recycle labels will be added to Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express and ReadyPost packaging and other Postal Service products this year.

“The Postal Service’s vision is to be a sustainability leader by encouraging a culture of conservation — and recycling is an integral part of those efforts. We’re proud to work with How2Recycle to make it easier for our customers to recycle Priority Mail and other packaging materials,” said USPS Chief Sustainability Officer Jennifer Beiro-Réveillé.

The USPS Sustainability website has additional information about the Postal Service’s sustainability efforts.

Share your feedback at uspslink@usps.gov. Your comments could be included in the “Mailbag” column.

Smart savings

Postal Service employees will receive a 20 percent tuition discount when they enroll at Indiana Wesleyan University.

The university, a global liberal arts and professional education institution, offers more than 100 associate, bachelor’s and master’s degree programs.

Through a new partnership with USPS, the tuition discount is available to employees attending classes on online or on campus at the university’s 15 education centers in Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio.

A military education program is also available.

To learn more, email or call the university at 614-285-2219.

The Employee Deals LiteBlue page has more information on higher education tuition discounts.

News Briefs

Scanning snapshot

Scanning snapshot. A snapshot of Postal Service scanning data shows the national rating was 96.92 percent during the week ending Feb. 12, down almost a half point from one week earlier.

The data was collected Feb. 17.

Western Pacific led the four areas with a rating of 97.24 percent, while Atlantic ranked last with a 96.71 percent rating.

Among the 67 districts, Dakotas, part of Western-Pacific, ranked first with a 98.38 percent rating, while Mississippi, part of Southern, ranked last with a 92.82 percent rating.

Scanning data allows customers to track their mail and packages, which helps USPS deliver excellent service, boost loyalty and drive revenue.

To see the latest data, go to the Informed Visibility website and select “Customer Experience,” followed by “DES 2 Scan Performance.”

Postal Bulletin. Postal Bulletin’s Feb. 11 issue highlights USPS passport services, as well as the latest updates to forms, policies and procedures.

Got news? Email your submissions to uspslink@usps.gov.