A fiery truck crash last night that killed one man also burned up thousands of pieces of mail sent from the Quad Cities. David Rash is manager of post office operations for eastern Iowa and western Illinois.He says a truck that leaves ever night about 9-30 headed for Chicago’s O-Hare airport mail-processing facility was involved in a head-on collision that caused a fire and destroyed about 95-percent of the mail. While it was a small part of the million pieces of mail sorted every day at the Quad Cities postal center, Rash says the truck, driven by a contract route driver, carried items that had been sent late in the day Thursday for destinations to the east.He says it was probably 55-percent full, carrying 100-thousand pieces of first-class mail, one thousand pieces of priority mail, and perhaps 25 pieces of express mail. Customers who’d sent express mail can check its progress by logging onto the post office website at usps-dot-com, but others will have to wait, Rash says. The Post Office has a Mail Recovery Center than handles this kind of emergency, and they’ll try to get the pieces back to the mailer to where it was headed, with an explanation. He advises people who mailed items Thursday afternoon or evening from the Quad Cities to wait a few days and see if they got to their destination. After that, if you contact the recipient and learn it never arrived, yours may have been among the mail destroyed in the crash. If it was a bill payment and causes problems, Rash advises going to your local post office and explaining what happened.He says the post office writes a form letter explaining the tragic event, and often a bill collector, mortgage-holder or other entity will accept it and give you a grace period for the payment. Though it was not a post office truck, the highway contract route driver carried mail for the postal service. He was treated and released from a local hospital, suffering burns. The driver of the S-U-V, who died in the crash, has not yet been identified.
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