Undelivered mail problems hit part of JP

January 31, 2014
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Several areas of Jamaica Plain have had problems with undelivered mail in recent weeks. St. Rose, Boylston and Jamaica Streets, as well as Robinwood and Spring Park Avenues, have been reportedly affected.

Maureen O’Connor, a St. Rose Street resident, said in an email to the Gazette she did not have mail delivered for four days starting on Jan. 17.

“I’ve lived on Saint Rose for 28 years and this has never happened before,” she said. “I recall one or two days when, understandably, the JP post office didn’t deliver mail because of a blizzard. Having said this, I recognize how difficult a postal worker’s job is, and wonder if this situation is partly due to cutbacks in staff or purely a managerial issue, or both.”

On St. Rose area neighborhood email lists, residents reported being told by letter carriers that mail was delivered to a local collection box, but then not distributed to houses. That mail was returned to the post office and only later delivered by other carriers, including one from the West Roxbury post office, the residents said they were told.

Melissa Lohnes, spokesperson for the United States Postal Service (USPS), said the matter is being looked into.

“Our investigation into this situation is incomplete at this time,” she said in an email to the Gazette. “However, delivery to this neighborhood has resumed. A small quantity of mail that appeared to have been mishandled earlier this week has now been delivered.”

O’Connor said she and several neighbors contacted local U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch and the JP post office to complain. She said some people felt they received contradictory information from the JP post office about the delivery problems.

The Gazette contacted O’Connor on Jan. 27 and she said she had received mail for the past several days.

This is not the first time JP has been hit with mail delivery problems. Several areas in 2011 experienced irregular mail delivery when the USPS redrew some routes, forcing carriers to handle larger areas in the same amount of time.

  • sunclad

    Residents may also wish to check with their carrier or postmaster to determine of their neighborhood has been re-classified as a “secondary route.” My neighborhood has such a designation, which means, if the mail is not fully delivered on a Monday on a specific route and the route is not finished, the carrier will pick up where he left off on Tuesday. The result is that on some days a select neighborhood may not see mail in a given day. In fact, you could not see mail for 2 days or more, while rare that could happen.

    Many carriers are also walking additional streets as well. Mine has a large swath of hilly terrain to cover and that used to be 2 routes in the past.

    Due to retirements and other staff cutbacks, the PO may also hire from time to time a “90-day casual” part time employee to deliver mail. That person may not be familiar with specific neighborhoods which can also lead to delays. Get to know your neighbor in case your mail winds up in their mail box as well. make certain your house number and apartment number are prominently displayed on the box and door as well.

    That does not answer the issue of mail left in a pick up box that is not delivered, but it will answer why, at other times, some neighborhoods or homes don’t get mail every day.