The United States Postal Service will continue to deliver mail even as schools and businesses across the country shut down or limit operations in an attempt to end the spread of the Coronavirus.
In an email to Informed Delivery users, the Postal Service informed customers that “normal operations are continuing” even though businesses and schools across the country are shutting down or closing early. As long as person-to-person contact is limited, there is very little reason to suspend package delivery; according to the Center for Disease Control, the virus is spread mainly from person-to-person.
The Postal Service assures customers that normal operations are continuing while the nation deals with the COVID-19 outbreak. We are in communication with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to ensure that customers and employees remain safe and healthy during this time.
The Postal Service has shut down or temporarily suspended operations in the past for a number of reasons. National management of the Postal Service can halt or suspend delivery for a number of reasons, including wildfires or other serious disasters that impact large areas. District Managers can suspend the Post Office branch under their jurisdiction as well. The USPS OIG website lists reasons a District Manager might shut down a Post Office:
- Termination of a lease or rental agreement;
- Lack of qualified personnel to operate the office;
- Irreparable damage with no suitable alternate quarters available;
- Severe damage to, or destruction of an office;
- Challenge to the sanctity of the mail; and
- Lack of adequate measures to safeguard the office or its revenue.
In 2019, the Postal Service suspended deliveries to parts of ten states due to weather-related issues. Parts of Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi lost service in 2005 after Hurricane Katrina destroyed roads.
Aside from possible delays, the stream of domestic mail will likely remain uninterrupted for the foreseeable future. International packages are a different story, though.