Post Offices Ask the Public to Clear Mailbox Areas of Snow & Ice for Safety of Letter Carriers

February 11, 2010 

Release No. 10-018  

MERRIFIELD VA — The Postal Service is attempting to provide collection, delivery and retail services today throughout the area. Some retail units may be closed due to lack of staffing. Collection boxes in some areas may be inaccessible due to snow accumulations.

Carriers will attempt delivery throughout the area. Customers are asked to clear a safe, accessible path to their mailboxes and make sure the mailbox itself is visible and free of snow and ice.

Due to safety concerns carriers will may not attempt door delivery when there is a heavy buildup of snow and ice on sidewalks, steps or porches. They will may not dismount for curbline boxes blocked by snow.

If mailboxes are blocked off or conditions are too difficult, letter carriers must consider safety and accessibility first. Letter carriers are instructed not to deliver to mailboxes and locations they consider unsafe.

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A self-supporting government enterprise, the U.S. Postal Service is the only delivery service that reaches every address in the nation, 150 million residences, businesses and Post Office Boxes. The Postal Service receives no tax dollars. With 36,000 retail locations and the most frequently visited website in the federal government, the Postal Service relies on the sale of postage, products and services to pay for operating expenses. Named the Most Trusted Government Agency five consecutive years and the sixth Most Trusted Business in the nation by the Ponemon Institute, the Postal Service has annual revenue of more than $68 billion and delivers nearly half the world’s mail. If it were a private sector company, the U.S. Postal Service would rank 26th in the 2008 Fortune 500.

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