The following year, volume rose only slightly, and the Postal Service narrowly avoided the first back-to-back declines in mail volume since the Great Depression. In an effort to address financial challenges and hold rates steady, in 1992 the Postal Service created a new organizational structure that replaced 5 regions and 73 field divisions with 10 areas and 85 districts.
Total mail volume began to grow again and, from 1992 through 2000, reached record levels. Then, in 2001, the Postal Service again saw a slight drop in total mail volume compared to the previous year. The 9/11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center buildings caused a tragic loss of human lives and rippled out to affect many areas. One was to intensify recessionary effects on the mailing and advertising industry. In 2002, total mail volume dropped to 202.8 billion pieces, down nearly five billion pieces from the previous year.
In 2005, for the first time, the volume of Standard Mail exceeded that of First-Class Mail. However, First-Class Mail continued to generate more revenue than any other class of mail. In 2006, the Postal Service sorted and delivered more than 213 billion pieces of mail, about 40 percent of the world's total mail volume and more than any other postal administration in the world.
In 2001, the USPS created a television commercial edited to Carly Simon's song "Let the River Run" The commercial, which ran after the 911 attacks and the anthrax mailings, featured no voice over, only the following text interspersed on title cards"
"We are mothers and fathers. And sons and daughters. Who every day go about our lives with duty, honor and pride. And neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night, nor the winds of change, nor a nation challenged, will stay us from the swift completion of our appointed rounds" Ever"
In 2006, 224,400 letter carriers delivered mail in the nation's cities.
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