USPS Is Suspending Services at 30 Post Offices, Effective Now
Hurricane Idalia has caused disruptions for customers in different areas.
The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is a public service, so it's required by law to deliver mail and provide access to mailing needs at post offices across the country nearly every day. That is unless certain unexpected circumstances arise. The USPS has the authority to stop deliveries and close post offices amid various emergencies like natural disasters—and the agency isn't above exercising this power to keep its employees and customers safe. In fact, 30 post offices are facing operational adjustments right now because of a recent disaster. Read on to discover where the USPS is currently suspending services.
The USPS says Hurricane Idalia is still affecting its operations.
Hurricane Idalia made landfall in the U.S. on Aug. 30 as a Category 3 hurricane, when it first slammed into Florida's Gulf Coast, CBS News reported. It then moved across northern Florida into Georgia before downgrading to a tropical storm as it made its way into South Carolina and North Carolina. But the aftermath of Idalia is still causing issues, especially for postal customers in certain areas.
In a banner on its website, the USPS warned residents that Hurricane Idalia is still affecting its operations in the Southeastern part of the country. "A destructive Hurricane Idalia has struck several states in the Southeast U.S. There are impacts to USPS operations in areas affected by the powerful storm," the agency said on its Service Alerts webpage. "Please refer to our residential service alerts webpage for current status. We are working to reopen facilities and restore service as soon as possible where it is safe to do so."
Nearly 20 facilities are still closed in Florida.
The USPS has been suspending services in several parts of Florida since Aug. 29 in anticipation of Hurricane Idalia's arrival. But the agency has already resumed operations and reopened facilities in different parts of the state. As of Sept. 1, the USPS indicates that 19 post offices in Florida are still closed because of the hurricane in the following towns and cities: Aripeka, Homosassa, Suwanee, Cross City, Mayo, Jasper, Jennings, Lamont, Lee, Live Oak, Lloyd, McAlpin, Madison, O'Brien, Old Town, Pinetta, Wacissa, Wellborn, and White Springs.
In an Aug. 31 local press release, the Postal Service said that customers normally served by the Aripeka Post Office can now obtain retail services and pick up their mail at a Postal Mobile Retail Unit that has been set up in the facility's parking lot. The agency has also set up a Mobile Retail Unit at the Suwanee Post Office, while operations for the Homosassa Post Office have been moved to the nearby Homosassa Springs Post Office, according to a separate local press release from Sept. 1.
Retail and delivery operations for the 16 other affected Florida facilities are still temporarily suspended until further notice, the agency added in its Service Alerts. For these post offices, "no alternate sites are available," the USPS stated.
The agency has also suspended services at post offices in Georgia.
Florida wasn't the only state impacted, however. On Aug. 30, the Postal Service suspended mail delivery and retail operations for Georgia customers in areas with ZIP Codes that started in 313, 314, 315, and 316 due to Hurricane Idalia. But the agency has since reopened many post offices and resumed deliveries for all affected facilities.
As of Sept. 1, retail operations are still not available at 11 Georgia post offices located in the following towns and cities: Barney, Barwick, Boston, Dixie, Du Pont, Fargo, Morven, Naylor, Ray City, Stockton, and Valdosta. Services at these facilities will "remain temporarily suspended until further notice," according to a local press release. "The Postal Service appreciates its customers and their understanding as we temporarily adjusted operations for their safety and that of our employees," the agency added in its release.
Customers are being asked to clear debris around their mailboxes.
As the Postal Service works to resume all operations in Florida and Georgia, the agency is calling on customers for help. In two separate local press releases for both states, the USPS said it needs people to clear debris around their mailboxes in order for it to "provide uninterrupted mail service" after Hurricane Idalia.
"The accumulation of debris around mail receptacles can cause delays in delivery, and in some areas, contractors removing the debris are taking mail receptacles along with the debris," the agency explained in both releases. "Residents are urged to pile away debris from their mailboxes."
If your mailbox has been damaged from the storm, the USPS also said you should contact your local post office to make arrangements for your mail to be held until repairs can be made. "In the aftermath of Hurricane Idalia, letter carriers are back on the street delivering mail, wherever it is safe and accessible to do so," the agency noted.
- Source: https://about.usps.com/newsroom/service-alerts/
- Source: https://about.usps.com/newsroom/local-releases/fl/2023/0831-aripeka-po-temporarily-suspends-operations.htm
- Source: https://about.usps.com/newsroom/local-releases/fl/2023/0901-usps-northern-florida-update-list.htm
- Source: https://about.usps.com/newsroom/local-releases/ga/2023/0830-usps-temporarily-suspends-due-to-hurricane-idalia.htm
- Source: https://about.usps.com/newsroom/local-releases/ga/2023/0901-usps-resumes-delivery-and-retail-operations.htm
- Source: https://about.usps.com/newsroom/local-releases/fl/2023/0831-help-usps-deliver-clear-debris-around-mailbox.htm
- Source: https://about.usps.com/newsroom/local-releases/ga/2023/0831-help-usps-deliver-clear-debris-around-mailbox.htm