Mailman Explains How the Polar Vortex Stopped Your Mail

A local mail carrier shared his experience, and that of his colleagues, during the sub-arctic cold that just swept through the area.

“Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.”

So goes what's commonly known as creed of the U.S. Postal Service.

But the sub-arctic temperatures swept into Chicago by the polar vortex indeed delayed our postal couriers. 

We asked our Facebook fans about their mail, and Tim Scallon, an Orland Park-area mail carrier, responded, sharing his experience delivering mail during the dangerous cold:

“As both a mail carrier and a resident in Orland, I do want to apologize on the catch-up approach we had to take with delivering these past few days. I know the phone's been ringing at the office constantly, and we also have been trying to answer each call as we can.

"Monday and Tuesday, the carriers were instructed to get back off the street come sundown (4:30pm) as the temperatures were dropping too low to continue to be out in the elements. I was out at about 3pm, and that wind chill was getting fierce. 

"Yesterday was the first day we were green lit to go later (6pm) still with the concerns about the temps. That was a decision made at the district level. 

"I know the phrase "We did our best" rings hollow when we weren't able to get to you to deliver, but we did give it our all. Leave days were cancelled, we brought in as many people as we could to help the main carriers carry the backlog of mail. A number of carriers went back out and delivered to the last minute, trying to get as much out as we could.

"Packages may be delayed across the country, as obviously this wasn't a local weather system. If you have a tracking number, you can track your package at USPS.com

"I want to thank everyone for being patient, and especially for those who cleared their boxes as best they could for us to deliver. All of us who carry mail appreciate our customers, especially at times like this.”

Read what was said about mail service on the Mokena Patch Facebook page.

Check out what area mail officials said about the conditions on Plainfield Patch and Tinley Park Patch.

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