City and Rural Carriers Battle the Elements to Deliver the Mail

February 17, 2010 5:51 AM
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It has been one heck of a winter with record amounts of snow in the Mid-Atlantic States and now the white stuff is assaulting the Deep South. Road crews continue to plow, salt and otherwise go without much rest as snow and ice storms arrive — and then arrive again.

But winter weather is part of the job for city and rural carriers, all doing their best to process and deliver the mail for their customers. Even the behind-the-scenes employees at USPS Headquarters in Washington, DC, were at work if they could get there by using public transportation even though the rest of the city was shut down.




Letter Carrier Tim Shamblen delivers mail along his Columbus, OH, mail route.







In Columbus, OH, NBC 4’s Reporter and Weatherman Marshall McPeek was invited to experience the challenges a letter carrier experiences during the brutal winter months. Letter Carrier British Bussey and McPeek trudged through deep snow, up icy stairs and over slippery porches on Bussey’s route.











Folsom, PA, Letter Carrier Ben Davidson picks up mail in a USPS collection box.









Some paths were clear while others were shin-deep with snow, making it difficult and hazardous to get to some of the mailboxes. "Just shovel a little bit, just to make it a little easier for us," said Bussey. She and other letter carriers are out in the elements every day, delivering mail to hundreds of addresses.

"It was eye-opening, to be sure," said McPeek. "I’m sure the majority of USPS customers don’t know how difficult and hazardous a carrier’s job is.

"Most of us take for granted that our mail will magically appear in our mailboxes on a daily basis, no matter the weather," the reporter said. "Shovel those sidewalks. The carriers have a difficult job as it is. Get out there and clear a path so they can deliver your mail."





© 2020 Marilyn Jones. All rights reserved. This article may not be reproduced without express written consent from Marilyn Jones.

About the Author

Marilyn Jones has been a journalist for more than 30 years and is currently a freelance feature writer specializing in travel. Her articles have appeared in major newspapers including the BostonGlobe, Akron Beacon Journal and Chicago Sun-Times as well as regional travel magazines.

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