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Topic: Storm question

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Subject: Storm question
Date Posted: 11/11/2012 1:42 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,167
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Does USPS have specific plans for large mail disruptions like this storm?  For example, a member in one of our swap games has been displaced by the storm.  Her home was fine (last she could check), but the drive, neighborhood, roads, power, and such are all a mess.  She was evacuated (or maybe just left to stay with family).   There's no stress, I'm sure the book will be delivered safely and probably before the lost date.

But out of general curiosity, how do these things work?  Who decides where and when mail is to be delivered again?  Do they check to see if evacuated citizens have returned, or is it your responsibility to notify USPS to hold your mail?

Here's my info:

  • 11/2/2012 8:41 PM - Enroute - KEARNY,NJ
  • 11/2/2012 8:45 PM - Enroute - KEARNY,NJ
  • 11/5/2012 7:07 PM - Enroute - KEARNY,NJ
  • 11/6/2012 3:53 AM - Enroute - BETHPAGE,NY
  • 11/10/2012 9:18 AM - Notice Left - LONG BEACH,NY

It appears to me that the book made it to Kearny, NJ.  At which time it was determined to be undeliverable due to the storm and was then sent to Bethpage for storage?  And now the notice left notation (she lives in Long Beach).  Does this mean the PO is holding her mail at the local PO now until it's determined she is in residence and they resume delivery?  If the PO can access your mailbox, do they assume you are there and just begin delivery?  Do they assume you are not present, and wait until you come pick up your accumulated mail to esume mail service?  Do they automatically hold all mail at the PO until it is established whether the individuals are in residence?

Inquiring minds and all that...

 



Last Edited on: 11/11/12 1:47 AM ET - Total times edited: 3
Date Posted: 11/11/2012 4:28 PM ET
Member Since: 7/30/2007
Posts: 4,275
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It appears to me that the book made it to Kearny, NJ.  At which time it was determined to be undeliverable due to the storm

There were no postal operations open "downstream" from there at the time, so it sat at the processing plant until offices opened back up and started accepting mail again, there was no "determination" that THIS package was undeliverable

and was then sent to Bethpage for storage? 

No, the post office dosen't have "storage", Bethpage was the next hub "downstream" that was opened up

And now the notice left notation (she lives in Long Beach).  Does this mean the PO is holding her mail at the local PO now until it's determined she is in residence and they resume delivery? 

 

Yes

If the PO can access your mailbox, do they assume you are there and just begin delivery? 

 

yes

Do they assume you are not present, and wait until you come pick up your accumulated mail to esume mail service? 

 

no

Do they automatically hold all mail at the PO until it is established whether the individuals are in residence?

no, If the post office can get to your box, they will deliver, It's up to the resident to notify the post office if they want the mail held or if they want a temporary forward to another address. 

Inquiring minds and all that...

Date Posted: 11/12/2012 9:49 AM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2010
Posts: 220
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Well, if your mailbox fills up, your carrier is likely to take it back to the PO and hold it, or at least hold everything that won't fit.  (That's what ours did when our hard-written hold request never got processed.  Now we do it on-line *and* leave a note.)

Because of the storm, I wouldn't be surprised if they are holding more mail than usual, especially if it looks like the house is currently unoccupied.

Date Posted: 11/12/2012 12:02 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,167
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Thank you Brandy!  Although much of this seems logical, there are sometimes other factors agencies have to work around.  So even in a major disaster zone USPS will assume if they can physically deliver your mail (through rain and snow, and...super storm lol) they will do so unless you notify them otherwise...got'cha!

Yes Evelyn, if your mail backs up to the point USPS can no longer squeeze it in your mailbox, they will place an internal hold and stop delivering.  They assume you experienced an emergency or forgot to submit a hold request, and will then hold your mail until you come in and pick up all the back mail or conform that you are ready to receive mail again (after 14 days, some might be returned...not to sure on that detail).  At least that's how it works here locally.



Last Edited on: 11/12/12 12:03 PM ET - Total times edited: 1