I believe the fleet of 727s you might be talking about belonged to a company called Ryan Air. They did a lot of the flying for the USPS, and their aircraft were painted in USPS colors and said USPS on them. I know they had a USPS hub in Indianapolis a few years ago, in which Ryan Air, Emery, American Int'l Airways, Polar, Gemini, Airborne Express, etc, would all park their aircraft.
Ryan operated the postal aircraft on a sub-contract from Emery...that is until Emery, Kitty Hawk, Express One, and the others had the contract pulled out from under them with the FedEx/USPS under the table deal. BTW, the Postal Service is paying FedEx quite a bit of money for this contract, far more than just "an exchange for placing FedEx drop boxes at the post office", as someone mentioned. Millions and millions. On a contract that wasn't put out for bid. Notice what kind of debt the USPS is operating under lately?? Right up against their stated legal maximum. Wonder why the cost of a first class stamp just went up 3 cents, along with most other postal services? To try and keep that debt under the legal stated maximum.
And no, I didn't fly the postal contract with Ryan, Emery, Kitty Hawk, Express One, etc. But I do know where nearly all the Ryan, Emery, Kitty Hawk, Express One, etc. pilots are now.
Is Express Net flying some of the USPS stuff now too? I seem them almost every morning in MKE in a 727 unloading over at the cargo ramp. Some days they have 72's that have their colors on them and other days they have old Emery 727's and a couple of times I say them in a L-1011.
I believe the U.S.P.S. signed a six-year, five-billion dollar deal to get FedEx to take over all the air freight operations.
I did fly the mail for a small contractor who operated Chieftains. The posts about Ryan, International are correct from what I saw. The operator I worked for was 1 1/2 years into a four-year contract with the U.S.P.S. when FedEx took over. I went from flying 30 hours a week to pumping gas for a few months last fall. Needless to say, I don't use Express Mail anymore!
Another casualty of the switch was the loss of Sunday delivery of Express mail. Since the switch, in some areas Express Mail is now put on a truck and driven to the major hubs. It went from being guaranteed next day delivery to two-day delivery.
Leave it to the post office to cut service and raise rates.
Yeah, that little stunt played on us by the Post Office and FedEx is a big reason why Express One went from operating 33 727s down to operating 1 727 (ad hoc) in lell than a year. Everyone still had years left on their contracts with the Post Office when this deal went through. Pretty amazing what the govt. can do when it puts it's mind to it. I was lucky and got out (left Express One) right before this happened, but I know a LOT of guys on the street because of this.
Even worse: The postmaster wanted this contract, not to save money for the post-office, but because FedEx offered him a position on it’s board of directors. Talk about conflict of interest. Lack of integrity. Backroom deal.
FedEx: “Pst buddy. You give us this contract, we’ll give you a corporate job” Sounds like something the mafia would do.
If I had a delivery company, the last thing in the world I would want is to have the Postmaster on my board of directors.
The Postmaster General was a Clinton appointee, we should have seen this coming.
Some of the "USPS" and "Emery" 727s you are seeing are owned by Emery. They are flown by Ryan crews. Although ALPA probably had nothing to do with the initial deal with Fedex and the USPS, ALPA did guarantee that the 500+ Emery pilots were kept quiet by putting their fledgling union in "custodianship" under the direct control of Duane W. himself. ALPA national pulled the rug out from under our own elected officials by this action and attempted to shut down our website. We have since relocated. Take a look at either www.emerycrew.org or boxhaulersplace.com for more intrigue on all of this. Some of you might be asking: "Why would ALPA do such a thing?" It's called the bottom line: cash. They just brought on FedEx pilot group, and the money they are going to get from membership far outweighs any amount they would get from dues from 500 pilots from the "king of the scumbags" of the dark side.