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Post Office Takes Precautions While Still Delivering Mail

A U.S. Postal Service letter carrier delivers mail to homes along Ridgewood Avenue in Wheeling last week.

WHEELING — The U.S. Postal Service is taking precautions while working to process and deliver mail for its customers during the coronavirus outbreak, according to federal and local officials.

Wheeling Postmaster Ron Burns said they are taking every precaution they can in the mail service process and to remain open to the public.

Burns said they are working continuously to wipe down and disinfect areas like door handles, countertops and many other surfaces inside their post office locations.

“Anything that somebody touches, we are required to wipe (disinfect) those surfaces every hour,” Burns explained.

He said they have the lobby marked with signage for people to stay at least six feet apart.

“They have been pretty good about that,” he added.

He said letter carriers are adapting to their daily letter routes as they continue to encounter a variety of ongoing changes.

“We’re experiencing businesses — some that are closing — are placing a mailbox outside. Some of them are putting their mail on hold and allowing one or two individuals to come pick it up everyday, and some of them are putting it on hold until they come back,” Burns commented.

In reference to local high-rise buildings and apartment complexes, Burns said as long as letter carriers are permitted to come into a building, they will deliver the mail.

“Some of them have requested that we don’t come in the building, so what we do is place their mail in a container inside the door, and they have an outgoing mail container that is right next to it,” he added.

He said in light of the coronavirus outbreak, the postal service is not directly handing packages over to the customers for a signature on their scanning devices. He said they are just scanning it, putting the carrier’s name on it, and in the printed name area they are writing COVID19 in that space to act as a signature.

“We’re not handing the customer anything, and they’re not giving anything back to us as far as the scanning device to keep that from being an issue, “ Burns said.

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