Skip to content

Northern Region Blog

Roadside mailbox

Mailboxes and Snow Removal Issues Nov. 25, 2015

After a big snow, we often receive questions about mailboxes. These generally fall into one of two categories: snow berm blocking mailbox and snowplow versus mailbox.

Snow blocking a mailbox

Our snow removal crews try to avoid creating berms in front of mailboxes and driveways. It is not always possible, though.

When a berm is created by our snowplowing efforts and blocks a mailbox, we are not required to remove it. It is the property owner’s responsibility to clear the area around their mailbox.

We sometimes do remove snow berms from around mailboxes and across driveways when we can, as a courtesy to residents, but it is not something we are required to do.

We also don’t always have the ability to clear snow around mailboxes. Time and budget constraints are the biggest factors in why we can’t always do it. In addition, not all of our equipment can perform that work. If we are out removing snow using plow trucks, we won’t be able to get around mailboxes. We would only be able to do so using graders or loaders.

(For more information about driveway berms and driveway snow removal, check out this post)

Mailboxes knocked down by plows

If a snowplow hits and knocks down a mailbox post, who is responsible for replacing it?

That depends.

Property owners are responsible for installing and maintaining mailboxes to the minimum design standards for supports, height and setback supports. If a properly designed and installed mailbox is knocked over by our snow removal equipment, we will repair it without cost to the property owner. You can find details about our mailbox standards on our Design and Construction Standards page.

If your properly designed and installed mailbox is hit by a plow, you can contact your local maintenance district. Contact information is available on our Maintenance and Operations page.

We are not responsible for repairing or replacing improperly designed or installed mailboxes.

Mailbox guidelines and maintenance information from the U.S. Postal Service is available on its website.