This is a developing story.
- A package exploded at a FedEx Ground facility early Tuesday morning, FedEx spokesperson Jim McCluskey confirmed to Supply Chain Dive. The facility is located in Schertz, Texas, just outside San Antonio. "One team member is being treated for minor injuries," McCluskey said.
- Hours later, the Austin Police Department sent a hazmat squad to a FedEx facility in Austin, investigating reports of a suspicious package. It is unclear if there's any connection between the two incidents.
- The explosion follows a series bombings in Austin this month, killing two people and injuring four others. The FBI believes the explosion outside San Antonio is connected to the ones in Austin.
E-commerce continues to fuel a growth in package volumes — and with that comes increased risks of counterfeit, parcel theft and hazardous packages.
After 9/11, federal regulators tightened security on air cargo, requiring the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to screen 100% of packages transported via passenger jet.
Ground shipping, however, hasn't faced the same scrutiny. FedEx Ground moves more than 8 million packages a day through 37 hubs — an enormous volume that would require technology and facilities to screen each parcel. FedEx did not respond to questions about its screening and detection protocols.
Of the four bombings in Austin earlier this month, three were in cardboard packages left on doorsteps; however, none of those were delivered by FedEx.
As investigations continue at the Schertz facility, operations and deliveries are bound to be disrupted, likely delaying shipments.
The string of bombings may also increase calls for security measures and screenings on parcel deliveries.