“Just assume that your mail has been delivered by someone who has been infected and plan accordingly,” said Peter Hotez, professor and dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine. Everyday, people are being told to work from home or being told they are out of work due to the deadly Coronavirus that has proven to be extremely contagious. With the amount of people deciding to stay home because of the virus, the number of online orders have been skyrocketing.
What do mail carriers say?
All of the major mail carriers like USPS, UPS, FedEx, and Amazon have vowed to get your mail out in regular time. However, USPS enforced a temporary suspension of the guarantee on Priority Mail Express International in route to China and Hong Kong "due to widespread airline cancellations and restrictions into this area." An Amazon spokesperson said some customers may experience some delivery delays due to the large spike in orders, customers living in regions severely impacted by the coronavirus may also experience delays.
According to ProPublica.com, “Postal carriers say they are being pressed into service against medical advice and with insufficient protection against the novel coronavirus. Two mail carriers told ProPublica they have been pressured to stay on their routes despite showing symptoms of COVID-19.” In Denver, one postal carrier whose route includes many locations where there are elderly and immunocompromised residents said he had to keep delivering on his route for days while he awaited a doctor’s note. An Amazon spokesperson said that Amazon is working on overdrive to get the influx of online orders out on time.“We are working around the clock with our selling partners to ensure availability on all of our products, and bring on additional capacity to deliver all of your orders.”
Can COVID-19 spread through your mail?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said there is a very low risk of coronavirus spreading on packages and products shipped over several days because of the poor survivability of the virus on surfaces. FedEx, USPS and other mail carriers say they have to follow new policies such as frequently sanitizing the inside of the vehicles and equipment to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. UPS says it is working with local health officials across the world to provide service. But is this actually enough?
Residential customers and small businesses can find out if their mail is being delivered or if their local Post Offices are open (HERE)
Do you think mail carriers should continue to deliver? Leave a comment with your thoughts below.
Wright, M. (2020). Retrieved 20 March 2020, from https://fox8.com/news/coronavirus/mail-and-delivery-services-whats-being-done-to-protect-against-coronavirus/
Jameel, M. (2020). Letter Carriers Say the Postal Service Pressured Them to Deliver Mail Despite Coronavirus Symptoms — and Often Without Hand Sanitizer — ProPublica. Retrieved 19 March 2020, from https://www.propublica.org/article/letter-carriers-say-the-postal-service-pressured-them-to-deliver-mail-despite-coronavirus-symptoms-and-often-without-hand-sanitizer
GIBSON, K. (2020). Can the coronavirus spread through the mail?. Retrieved 19 March 2020, from https://www.cbsnews.com/news/coronavirus-can-it-spread-through-the-mail-package-delivery/
Koop, C. (2020). Retrieved 19 March 2020, from https://www.newsobserver.com/news/coronavirus/article241269506.html
Elassar, A. (2020). Retrieved 19 March 2020, from https://www.wfsb.com/news/mail-services-including-the-usps-and-fedex-will-continue-delivering/article_416c5cbe-f793-59d3-8c04-786c9e781a2d.html
Carithers, C. (2020). Retrieved 19 March 2020, from https://www.wkrg.com/digital-mojo/wondering-about-mail-how-the-usps-is-operating-during-covid-19-pandemic/