‘Like a big tidal wave’: What’s being done to fix mail delay issues?

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AKRON (WJW) — Dozens of trucks were parked all around the United States Post Office on Wolf Ledges Parkway in Akron Friday.

Several drivers tell us some of the trucks are filled with your mail, while other drivers are waiting for mail they will  deliver elsewhere.

“Some guys been out here two days and they are highly upset. Who wants to sit for two days?”  said Mike Jones Sr., a truck driver from Cleveland.  He said he had been waiting for several hours.

And Rodney Edwards, a truck driver from Lorain, said he waited outside in his truck for 10 hours Thursday and returned early Friday morning.

“With everybody shopping online and so forth it’s like a big tidal wave and nothing they can do; they only have so much room,” Edwards said.  “The guys are in there working overtime and everything. They are trying to get it done but it’s just too many packages.”

The FOX 8 I-Team started looking into post office delivery issues after so many of you contacted us. Many of you told us that you were concerned about not getting mail or packages.  A few businesses also reported they are losing money because they cannot get their products shipped.

A spokeswoman for the United States Postal Service said she doesn’t know how long some of the mail has been sitting in trailers parked behind the Akron facility.  She did say employees are doing their best to process and deliver the mail.

“Since November, our Cleveland and Akron Processing Plants have hired more than 500 employees for the holiday season, 73 were onboarded this week, and 70 will begin Monday 12/21,” said Naddia Dhalai, USPS spokeswoman.  “Examples of the firepower we have in Cleveland and Akron include parcel sorting equipment that ranges from 5,000 to 9,000 packages per hour — all in operation. These facilities make over 750 inbound and outbound trips daily.

 It’s important for your viewers to know that every piece of equipment and every truck is being used every single day. Mail moves into the facility and out of the facility daily. In these unprecedented times, and a year with significant volume increases, we continue to flex our available resources to meet the demand within a finite number of resources available to us.”

Dhalai added that the delays are due to a high volume of mail and a reduced number of employees due to COVID-19.

However, two federal lawmakers say more needs to be done to get mail delivered quicker.

“I just don’t understand,” said U.S. Congressman Dave Joyce. “Christmas comes every year and we know that mail is going to be heavy this year because of more people shopping online but, heck, Amazon, UPS, and FedEx they manage to get it done on a pretty timely basis without a hitch. “

U.S. Congressman Tim Ryan says he blames the issue on upper management at the USPS.

“The Post Master General needed to anticipate this,” Ryan told the FOX 8 I-Team. He added that lawmakers knew there were going to be major issues. “They ignored us.”

Ryan and Joyce say they are both demanding answers.  They also want changes made so your mail gets out of the trucks and into your mailbox.

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