OSHA fines USPS in Jacksonville $129,336 for exposing mail carriers to August heat

You’ve probably heard the saying about postal workers: Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night is going to stop them from delivering your mail.

But the Occupational Safety and Health Administration doesn’t seem to agree.

OSHA accuses the Arlington post office on Merrill Road of putting mail carriers in danger by requiring them to deliver mail in high temperatures.

The federal agency issued USPS a $129,336 fine Jan. 24.

USPS began the process of contesting that fine Tuesday.

According to OSHA, around Aug. 9, “Letter Carriers were exposed to the hazards of high ambient temperatures while delivering mail” which could have led to “heat cramps, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke.”

“People’s health is number one and should be a priority in any job or task that is set before us,” said post office customer Frank Jackson.

Action News Jax First Alert Chief Meteorologist Mike Buresh said that was the hottest time of the year in Jacksonville, with a heat index up to 107.

“I think it’s awful, if they had to work under those conditions,” said post office customer Diane Nelson.

OSHA’s website says it has cited USPS for violating the agency’s same rule five times since 2014 at post offices across the country.

A USPS spokesperson said she can’t answer any of Action News Jax’s questions about the citation because the postal service is contesting the fine.


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