March 2, 2006

Computer woes briefly hobble Postal Service

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Glitches in the computer network
that links U.S. post offices caused delays and limited services
across the United States for several hours on Thursday, a U.S.
Postal Service spokeswoman said.

The 37,000 U.S. post offices rely on centralized systems
that process credit card payments and automate services such as
weighing letters and packages.

"We had a network issue that caused some system freezing,"
said Sharon Mayall, a postal service spokeswoman in San
Francisco. "They receive information and downloads and updates
from this system and apparently they were doing a download last
night and there were some network issues that caused some
delays this morning."

She said the computer problems were fixed after several
hours and normal service eventually restored.

According to its Web site Ohio-based NCR Corp. has
installed automation systems in 8,500 U.S. post offices and the
company has announced that it is expanding the use of its
software to 15,000 post offices this year.

Company officials did not return calls for comment late on