USPS Is Suspending Operations in These Places, Effective Immediately
The postal agency is struggling to keep services running at certain post offices.
Over the past few months, we have seen the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) temporarily close hundreds of post offices across the country for severe weather. The agency has long warned customers that hazardous conditions can prompt service suspensions, so it's hardly a surprise that strong snowstorms and icy roads would cause problems for postal operations. But now, the USPS is suspending services in more places for reasons that have nothing to do with winter weather at all. Read on to find out all about the latest Postal Service struggles, and which customers are being affected.
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The Postal Service just suspended operations in several states.
The USPS uses its Service Alerts website to warn consumers about "postal facility service disruptions" in their area. This tool shares "current, frequently-updated information about whether mail is being delivered to your neighborhood or if your local Post Office is open," the Postal Service explains.
According to the latest alerts, customers are dealing with new disruptions in three different states: Georgia, Alabama, and California.
The USPS updated its website on Feb. 24 to inform customers that retail operations had just been suspended at the Mountain City Post Office in Georgia, with additional operations set to be paused in the coming days. Then on March 2 and 3, two more updates from the agency revealed that operations had been suspended at the Coy Post Office in Alabama and the Bolinas Post Office in California.
Services in California have been relocated.
Residents of Bolinas, California, will now have to drive a little farther for their postal needs. In a separate local press release issued March 2, the USPS said it had to temporarily relocate Bolinas Post Office services because of a leasing issue.
"This temporary relocation was made necessary due to the inability to a secure lease agreement with the lessor," the Postal Service explained in the release.
Gregg Welsh, the owner of the Bolinas Post Office building, is accusing the postal agency of allegedly neglecting to replace asbestos-laden tiles in the facility, The Point Reyes Light reported. The Postal Service has not responded to the landlord's claims, according to the newspaper. As a result, Welsh has ended the lease and told the USPS that the post office has to vacate the property.
While the USPS did not respond to Best Life directly about the asbestos claims, USPS strategic communications specialist Kristina Uppal said, "It was always our intention to stay at the current location. Unfortunately, we were given a very short notice to vacate which necessitated the need to temporarily relocate to alternative quarters."
Starting March 6, the Bolinas Post Office's retail and P.O. Box operations have moved to the Olema Post Office. The two facilities are about 12 miles apart, which is roughly a 20-minute drive for customers.
"The Postal Service is actively in the process of securing a new location," the USPS added in its release. "Our top priority is to maintain continuity of service to any customers affected by this relocation. We sincerely appreciate the patience and business of our customers during this transition."
The USPS said the Alabama suspension was also caused by lease issues.
The Postal Service issued a local press release about the temporary suspension of retail and P.O. Box operations at its post office in Coy, Alabama, on March 2.
"Customers may conduct retail transactions, including purchasing stamps and mailing packages, at the Camden Post Office," the agency stated. That post office is more than 15 miles away from the Coy Post Office. "With proper identification, Post Office Box customers may [also] pick up their mail at the Camden Post Office."
The USPS did not offer any more information about the service suspension for this facility in its release. But when Best Life reached out to the agency, a spokesperson indicated that the issue is also related to the building's lease.
"The suspension was due to non-renewal of a lease," Debbie Fetterly, a strategic communications specialist for the USPS, said in a statement, adding that she does not have any more information on the matter at this time.
The Georgia suspension is also the result of a leasing ussue.
The Postal Service said residents in Mountain City, Georgia, would need to seek out an alternative location for retail services, as of Feb. 27. According to the USPS, this includes the Rabun Gap Post Office and the Clayton Post Office, which are both roughly three miles away from the Mountain City facility.
P.O. Box service was still available at the Mountain City Post Office on Feb. 27 and Feb. 28. But starting March 1, P.O. Box customers in Mountain City have to pick up their mail at the facility in Rabun Gap, Georgia.
"The U.S. Postal Service apologizes for this inconvenience to our customers. More information will be provided as soon as it becomes available," the agency added in its local press release.
The Mountain City Post Office suspension is also the result of lease problems, as The Clayton Tribune reported. According to the newspaper, a letter dated Feb. 24 with the USPS letterhead that was posted on the door of the Mountain City facility stated as much.
"This suspension is due to the non-renewal of a lease at the property where the Mountain City Post Office is housed," the notice read. "We apologize for any inconvenience these changes may cause and ask for your patience as we work to source a new Mountain City Postal facility for your future use."
In a statement to Best Life, Evelina Ramirez of USPS corporate communications confirmed, "The U.S. Postal Service is continuing to provide delivery service in Mountain City, GA, and currently, is reviewing plans to offer retail or Post Office Box service within the city limits. This suspension is due to the non-renewal of a lease at the property where the Mountain City Post Office was housed."