Homeward Bound

Seven primary conveyor loops carry all the parcels, and each loop has 364 links where packages can be transferred to another belt. These smaller conveyor belts carry packages heading for the same cities or zip codes to a canvas bag which, when full, is loaded back onto a plane. The center can process up to 416,000 packages per hour. FedEx has a similar 832-acre complex in Memphis which, like Louisville, was chosen because they are a two-hour airplane ride from most of the US, and they both experience mild weather.

The local sorting facility is the package’s final stop before reaching the desired destination. Here, workers scan the labels one last time before being conveyed to the proper vehicle. The driver then makes his rounds, delivering the items and scanning each as they arrive.

We may have a tendency to just slap a label on our packages and only worry that it will arrive. But the shipping system to get it there is a remarkable feat of human ingenuity. so the next time you ship something overnight, remember that it’s going to travel by plane, train, and automobile to get to its destination by 10:30 tomorrow morning.


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