How Far To Park From Mailbox? What USPS Wants You To Understand And Do
No federal or state law prohibits parking in front of a mailbox. However, one must adhere to USPS guidelines to ensure nothing hinders incoming mails from getting to their mailboxes.
There are several things you should avoid doing to your mailbox or someone else’s. One of them is parking in front of the mailbox. If you do, then you can blame yourself for whatever happens. Carriers can decide against delivering your mails.
So, even if you already have a small space left beside your house and the only parking space left is next to your mailbox, do not park your car there. It’s crucial to park your vehicle or bike appropriately, some distance away from the mailbox.
Let’s go back and answer the question.
How far to park from the mailbox?
Park your vehicle 15 feet from your or a neighbor’s mailbox. Leave 15-feet space before and after your mailbox.
Why do you have to allot so much space to a mailbox? It’s a general guideline for curbside mailboxes. The purpose is to enable carriers to deliver mails safely. It will also enable them to re-enter traffic without spending so much time reversing their vehicles. Don’t forget that they have hundreds of mails to deliver per day.
Again, allowing some space around your mailbox will enable carriers to have a better view of pets, children, adults, and elderly ones that entered their path unknowingly. Please note that carriers can decide against delivering mail if they discover a hazard while discharging their duties.
So, don’t park your vehicle close to your mailbox. And if there’s snow or ice on the walking route leading to your mailbox, get rid of them. Just make the area around your mailbox conducive and easy for carriers to reach. Otherwise, you may be forced to visit USPS’ office to get your mails yourself.
That’s the answer to how far you can park your car from a mailbox. But this post contains other crucial information. So, keep reading.
What To Do To Keep Get Mails In Your Mailbox
If your mailbox is always empty, even though you’re expecting mails, it could be your fault. How? If your mailbox or path leading to it poses a threat to carriers, they may decide against delivering your mails.
So, how can you make the task a breeze for carriers and ensure you get your mails in your mailbox regularly? Let’s discuss that.
Keep your curbside mailbox snow-free:
Now that the winter weather is already in full swing, chances are your mailboxes would be packed with snow from time to time.
Unfortunately, carriers won’t clean up your mailbox for you. Even if they did, count yourself lucky. In such situations, most carriers would take your mail back to their office. And what this means is that you have to get it yourself.
So, you have to keep your mailbox snow-free. You should also check from time to time to ensure there’s no snow obstructing carriers from delivering your mail into the mailbox.
Maintain proper space around your curbside mailbox:
Keep a distance of 15 feet before and after the mailbox. Please don’t take this for granted.
Doing so will only make it a breeze for carriers to deliver your mail into the mailbox without stepping out of their vehicle. It will allow them to also have a clear view of their rear and front area before driving off.
Most people believe that vehicle carrier should always come down from their vehicles to deliver mails. But in reality, this isn’t visible, given the massive mails they have to deliver daily.
Imagine having over 700 mails to deliver per day, and they stop by every house to deliver each of them. Two things might happen to such carriers. He or she would get super exhausted at the end of the day. There’s also a possibility that they may not deliver half the mails.
Furthermore, most people may ask, what happens if a neighbor decides to park a vehicle by my mailbox? If this happens, you will be the one to blame. Carriers have no means of knowing who owns the vehicle parked by the mailbox.
Always ensure no one is blocking your mailbox. If the car was parked there by your neighbor, explain to him or her politely. If he or she doesn’t want to listen, don’t take matters into your own hands. Instead, report to the appropriate authority.
Keep sidewalks and steps clean:
If your curbside mailbox is on a walking route, ensure the sidewalks and steps are debris-free.
During the winter periods, you need to ensure ice and snow isn’t on the steps and sidewalks. If they are, clean them off to enable carriers to get to their mailbox and deliver your mail.
Snow and ice on steps and sidewalks are delicate matters, as they pose significant threats to carriers. So, if they’re on your steps and sidewalk, carriers may not deliver your mail.
By the way, carriers have been instructed not to deliver mails in such a condition. The reason is that there’s a chance they could slip and fall. And you know that treating such injuries can be expensive.
So, get rid of ice and snow on the path leading to your mailbox. It would make much sense if you also watched out for cans and other objects on the way.
A Handy Tip: Mail delivery could be denied by vehicle or walking carriers if they can’t have easy access to your mailbox.
Fix your leaning mailbox:
f your mailbox isn’t standing straight as it should, it’s your responsibility to fix it. Fixing such problems won’t be complicated or expensive. And you can even do it yourself or seek paid help.
How To Fix Your Leaning Mailbox Post
It’s common to find mailbox posts leaning. It happens to them over time. The reason could be rotten wood buried in the soil, wind or physical damage caused by a vehicle or person that bumped into the mailbox post, or a fault with the original installation.
All these can cause your mailbox post to start leaning. And here’s how to fix such problems, so carriers will not have any reason to complain or decide against delivering your mails.
Method#1: Straighten the leaning mailbox post:
If the post is not broken or there’s no rotten portion underneath the soil, you will find it easier to straighten it.
Use these steps to get your mailbox post upright with ease.
Step#1: Get some firm materials. It could be a cut-down cedar shingle, rocks, or you can even get concrete.
Step#2: Get the post to stand straight so that you can fill up the space it left on the soil while leaning.
Step#3: Keep the post straight by wedging materials next to it. Now fill up the gaps left by the post.
Step#4: Get sand and pour it into the hole by the post. After that, you have to make the ground surrounding the mailbox post compact so that the post would remain straight.
Method#2: Fixing a broken or rotten mailbox post:
The mailbox post is built of wood. So, chances are it can become rotten or get broken over time. It often happens to the portion of the post buried underneath the ground.
Now, fixing a rotten or broken mailbox post is also a simple task. Here’s what you need to do.
Using a shovel, dig up the entire post and assess the extent of the damage. If it’s rotten or broken, you need to get a replacement.
Endeavor to install your new mailbox post in the same spot where you removed the damaged one. And when buying a post, choose one that’s maintenance-free.
A Handy Tip: Even if you used your hard-earned money to purchase a new post, keep in mind that it’s not your property. Once it starts receiving mails, it automatically becomes the government’s property.
Now that you now know how far one should park from a mailbox, ensure you park your vehicle at the proper distance and instruct others to do the same.
You should also make an effort to maintain your mailbox from time to time. Mailbox maintenance should be higher during winter periods, where snow and ice usually mess up the place.