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Mail delivery falters in Summit County as snow buries mailboxes

This winter many residents in Summit County have seen their trash and recycling pile up due to heavy, frequent snowstorms. Mail delivery is also suffering, and the postmaster said he is working on it.

Some neighborhoods have been hit harder than others with service interruptions. And postmaster Christopher Kerwood said some winter problems are annual events. But this year has brought an unusual number of people saying they aren’t getting their mail.

Dena Corson and her family live in the Silver Springs neighborhood of the Snyderville Basin. She said that toward the end of last year, mail starting being delivered later and later. This year, it stopped completely.

“I've been waiting for some photographs to come. So it's been about two weeks. I noticed, I was looking for something to show up in the mail and some birthday cards over on my birthday, which was January 28. Right, I knew that I was looking for a couple things that at you know, the end of January.”

Corson said it's frustrating having to go to the post office to retrieve mail since she goes to work before it opens and comes home after it closes - and during the day the rest of her family is in Salt Lake City.

Residents whose mail isn’t being delivered must go to the main post office on S.R. 224 to pick it up. No other post offices in Park City or the Snyderville Basin store residents’ undeliverable mail.

Corson went to the post office to find out about the lack of service, and learned snow has been preventing some mail delivery this winter.

“She said, well, he wouldn't just restart delivering the mail until you come get your mail and tell us that the mailbox is clear. I said I think my neighbors have done that. The mailbox has been clear. And I'll tell you right now, just you know since you asked, I'm gonna do what you say the mailboxes are clear so start redelivering our mail please.”

Kerwood confirmed the problem. He said the postal service requires residents to clear 15 feet on either side of mailboxes so delivery people can deliver from the right side of their vehicles without having to get out.

He said residents should have been notified about that requirement. Usually, information cards detailing proper clearance are placed in mailboxes.

USPS cards showing proper clearance.
USPS cards showing proper clearance.

Kerwood said the service problems are not just occurring in Silver Springs, and that it happens every winter. He told KPCW that earlier this winter an employee was delivering to the Deer Valley area. She had to get out of the car since the mailbox was not accessible. She slipped in icy conditions and slid under the vehicle.

Kerwood added that since many Silver Springs residents have come in and reported that their mailboxes were clear and they still weren’t getting mail, he plans to visit the area to investigate.