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On alert

New safety feature aims to reduce dog bites

A letter carrier with a bundle of mail being followed by a dog.
USPS is using technology to alert carriers to dogs at individual addresses.

A new safety feature that aims to reduce dog attacks against USPS employees took effect last week.

Customers who use the Package Pickup scheduling application through or USPS Mobile are now asked if there is a dog at the pickup location.

When postal carriers approach a residence where a customer has indicated the presence of a dog, the employee’s hand-held scanner annunciates an alert.

The alert information is stored securely within the Postal Service and will not affect mail delivery or pickup.

USPS announced the feature last week to help kick off National Dog Bite Prevention Week, which runs from May 15-21. The Postal Service also released statistics that show more than 6,500 employees were attacked by dogs in 2015.

In addition to the new feature, USPS uses PS Form 1778, Dog Warning Card, to alert carriers to the presence of dogs on their routes.

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