Brick Mailboxes Outlawed in Medina County

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

MEDINA, Ohio- Mailboxes across northeast Ohio take a pounding from snow plows during the winter.

But a new ordinance in Medina County requires people who live on county maintained roadways and who have brick and mortar enclosures around their mailboxes to get rid of them and replace them with plastic and/or lightweight sheet metal ‘break-away’ mailboxes.

The ordinance was passed on December 3rd, after the county had already taken down the bricked-in mailbox of retired teacher Mark Fredrick.

Fredrick says he just completed his ornate bricked-in mailbox in September.

It was lit using “bullet-proof” glass block with lights inside and had it wired with an electrical outlet.

“There’s over a thousand bucks, 50-cents a brick there 32 dollars glass block the electrical wiring, underground cable it was $300 for the copper wire to get out here,” said Fredrick.

The county calls mailboxes like Fredrick’s a hazard to the motoring public, referring to Ohio Revised Code.

Their ordinance says such structures can be deemed an obstruction and ‘shall be removed’ in accordance with state law.

“If a vehicle hits the mailbox the mailbox can generate like a projectile off of the mailbox especially like masonry or steel boxes those things can like go through a windshield, so that is why there have been national standards developed probably over the last 30 years that say mailboxes should be breakaway,” said Medina County Engineer Mike Salay.

Fredrick says he was given five days to remove his creation, and when he wasn’t able to do that the county did it and billed him for the work.

“It was ten guys and six trucks to move one mailbox, that is quite an operation,” said Fredrick.

Fredrick says he is not as upset about the ordinance as he is that so far he seems to be the only one for whom it has been enforced.

Salay says the ordinance has to be universal, but he isn’t sure yet how the county will go about enforcing it.

“That will be up to my office and the county commissioners to determine, moving forward, mailboxes, certainly any new construction would conform to these standards existing mailboxes there are several ways we can approach that,” said Salay.

The county engineer says the ordinance that Medina County passed closely mirrors ordinances already adopted in other counties.

“I don’t think most people realize that if they put something in the roadway that is hazardous to the motoring public they are assuming some pretty severe liability for that too,” said Salay, adding “I don’t think too many people think about that. Their objective is to put something out there that cant be destroyed well that may be the case but it could cause damage or injury to somebody else.”

28 comments

  • Robert Robinson

    This brick mailbox ordinance in Medina is prime example of government unilaterally deciding something is unlawful and dangerous without having to produce any proof evidence or studies to validate their opinion. It’s as suggested that owners may be liable for damage to cars, surprise there is an Ohio state law requiring automobile owners to keep control of their vehicles while driving. It’s like saying if you run your car into a brick house the home owner is liable for the driver’s mishap. Frankly Medina is setting a dangerous precedent making home owners responsible for motorist’s accidents. If it was my mailbox that was torn down I would take legal action against the county personal involved they are obvious wrong!

    • John Slabinski

      Robert, it doesn’t take a genius nor any sort of “study” to realize that having brick enclosed mailboxes right along side of a county roadway presents an unnecessary and dangerous hazard.

      • Mark

        John, you’re right. Same genius should see a ditch that runs along and into a driveway connection will mean a very sudden stop for a vehicle (which is also very dangerous for the occupant, let alone can flip the vehicle), and every power pole is dangerous too. How about those advertising signs? Parked cars? split fences? Big sandstones?

        A line has to be drawn, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be moved.

    • mark

      USE A P O BOX AT THE POST OFFICE….STOP BY ONCE A WEEK TO
      COLLECT YOUR MAIL…..MUCH CHEAPER THAN REPLACING CURB SIDE MAIL BOXES….

  • Tina

    So, this gent is the ONLY ONE they’ve enforced the law with? And they did it BEFORE the ordinance was PASSED? What the hell, Medina County! That sure stinks of harassment.
    Sure as hell won’t be moving down the road into that county, ever. Fascist regime in the county…

    • gafarm

      YEP I’m the ONLY one despite my providing a list to engineer Salay, and county commissioner Friedrick, with 33 other boxes. to move…..DISCRIMINATION? YES! not another touched!
      BOB, IF Salay had me in class, he would have learned justice, even if it’s not in the course of study.
      Ricky Bennett- the GFI was perfectly safe, and lit up the address stones by shining throuh the glass blocks.
      Somebody was just jealous and flexing their small puddle muscle!

    • gafarm

      NO! don’t them find out, or they’ll send TEN guys and SIX trucks to destroy it.I have the photos of mine here!COUNTY waste. vote more taxes?LOL MARK

  • Jane

    This is a prime example of why I would never move to Medina County. Robert I completely agree with you. If your mail box is on your property then what is the problem? Oh does that mean that we should remove all trees that grow along side of any road? I’ve heard of more people dieing in accidents where they have went off road and hit a tree vs going off road and hitting someones mailbox.

  • Jujubean

    Good grief it’s just common sense and who spends a 1000 dollars on a mailbox… Lol. These old people, just complain ugg go away.

  • Ricky Bennett

    every one is missing the point that there was 110v ac power going to this box , that alone is dangrus if a car did hit it the one in the car and any one that go’s to touch the car would be in danger of electrecal shock or worse a fire due to the sparking electrical lines

    • Mike

      Ricky, so not true. If it was built to code, being it is an outside fixture, it was connected to a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter. This is a circuit breaker “plus”, where if it detects and imbalance in the current between the lines it trips, let alone for more current than the 15A or so breaker (it’ll trip). If the mailbox got hit, it would trip. No electrical hazard at all.

      • Ricky Bennett

        it is kinda the worst case scenario you never no what would happen the breakers could fail to trip it happens.

        why do you need a electrical line going to a mail box any ways?

        i mean i always wanted to try and put a wireless cam in mine just so i know if i should go out there or not but that would be powered via solar power any ways

  • Mike

    So Medina wants cheap boxes that the plows pulverize with their snow pile… and that’s if their blade misses it. Post Office has regulations as to where it has to be, which is in the line of fire, so it’s pretty much a lose lose.

  • Deborah

    Medina needs to find better things to worry about. If I choose to install a better mail box so those dim wit’s could destroy it!! I will do it even if it is with 15″ of sheet rock!

  • Justin Conrad

    Don’t you know we are no longer free people you can’t do anything anymore im a military vet and it makes me sick how much people are scared little b@#!ches what is wrong with you people did you all forget your adults and can make your own decisions in life or I forgot you do what ever the government tells you to. Most people need to be put in a bubble because they can’t handle daily life. What part of this mailbox is on his property dont people understand. Wait I forgot we dont own our houses and property either you people better start waking up and pull your heads out of your bums before it’s to late and the government runs every aspect of your lives get a back bone.

  • Mak Fredrick

    Thank you ALL for your comments here. I read a couple of them to the county commissioner’s meeting this Monday morning. see the taped meetings at Http:// bat.pegcentral.com/ Brunswick Area Tv. our tax dollars at work . MARK.

Comments are closed.