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A U.S. Postal Mail Carrier delivers mail on Wester Avenue, in Brattleboro, as the snow piles up from Winter Storm Gail on Thursday, Dec. 17, 2020.

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VERMONT — The US Postal Service reminds residents that “if they cannot reach your mailbox, they cannot deliver your mail.” That message regarding snow removal came from Shawn Blaine, postal operations manager.

“The Postal Service treats safety and service with equal priority,” Blaine said, “That’s why we remind you to include that mailbox in your snow removal routine.”

Letter carriers are on the front line of severe weather conditions. Doorstep deliveries, painted porches and steps quickly grow hazardous. “While salting and rubber-backed mats help, we rely on you to clear the snow,” Blaine said. “If there’s a warm spell, and the melting snow puddles, a quick freeze can make a sidewalk slick again.”

Residents who receive delivery to roadside mailboxes also must keep the approach to and exit from the mailbox clear of snow and any other obstacles, like trash cans and other vehicles. “The carrier needs to get in, and then out, without leaving the vehicle or backing up,” said Blaine. “The area near the mailbox should be cleared in a half-moon shape to give the carrier full visibility.”

“Please watch for slow-moving postal vehicles, carriers on foot, and children that play near mailboxes or snow banks,” he said. “And don’t zip by neighbors who are clearing mailboxes or collecting their mail. Let’s all stay safe.”


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