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U.S. Homeland Security to stop Japan Post packages

Date Posted: 2010-11-20

Customers wanting to send packages to the United States via the Japan Post found themselves using smaller boxes beginning Wednesday, as the postal carrier begins complying with new rules from the United States Transportation Security Administration, an arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Starting Wednesday, airlines are prohibited by the Transportation Security Administration from shipping postal packages weighing 453 grams, just under one pound. The carriers told Japan Post the TSA heightened is aviation alert level in the aftermath of packages containing explosives being found in Britain and Dubai in late October.

The new rules apply not only to packages shipped from Japan, but also from other countries. A spokesman for Japan Post Holdings says 16 million letters and packages are shipped to the U.S. by air and sea each year, and that the new rule impacts about 15% of those. Japan post says about 200,000 packages each month will be stopped by the new anti-terrorism measures.

U.S. military postal authorities have not announced any changes to procedures for shipping packages from APO and FPO facilities to the United States. Local Federal Express, United Parcel Service of America, Inc., and DHL International GmbH say they’ve no similar plans as Japan Post, but DHL says it “will cooperate with the United States and other countries as they’ve raised security levels.” Overseas Courier Service Ltd., has already stopped accepting packages containing ink cartridges or toner cartridges for delivery to the United States, Europe, Africa or Latin America.

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