Mail causes frustration

CHECKING the letterbox has become fraught with frustration for Bundaberg resident Phill Dunn.

Every week the Pitt Street resident receives threatening letters meant for someone else – a resident he believes lives 43 kilometres away.

“They are addressed to people who have never lived here, and I send them back saying ‘not at this address’, but they keep coming,” Mr Dunn said.

“There is a Pitt Street in Cordalba, and I think they are meant to be going there.”

The misdirected mail contains everything from member’s club announcements to lay-by notices and worryingly, demands from debt collectors.

“Most of it I just return, but I accidentally opened one envelope without seeing the name, and it was a demand for $500 from (collections agency) Baycorp,” he said.

To add to Mr Dunn’s concern, the company has started telephoning his home to track down the outstanding money.

“We’ve been getting calls from companies associated with Baycorp, and from Telstra – it seems they are hoping (the addressee) might pick up the phone,” he said.

“We have told them he does not live here but they keep calling – a reasonable person would take that as harassment.”

Mr Dunn and his wife are at their wits’ end dealing with the situation.

“We’ve tried phoning Baycorp and Auspost to get the information changed, and we’ve tried the Ombudsman but nothing has changed,” he said.

“I’m concerned that this has become a matter of identity theft.”

An Auspost spokeswoman said the company had to deliver mail to the place it was addressed, but said Mr Dunn was doing the right thing by returning it with “not at this address” on the envelope.

“Upon receiving this returned mail, what normally occurs is that the businesses involved would then update their database to correctly reflect that the customer is not at the address in question,” she said.

“Unfortunately, this is something that we are unable to control, as the mail has been addressed correctly from a street, suburb and postcode perspective.”

She said Auspost’s Bundaberg delivery manager would contact Mr Dunn to see if there was anything else that could be done to help.

“However, the longer term solution needed is that Mr Dunn’s details are removed from the mailing lists of the businesses currently sending him mail based on his request,” she said.

Baycorp could not be reached for comment before publication of this story.

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