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‘Dangerous’ postal box change sparks anger in Boardman

Published: Fri, December 24, 2010 @ 12:09 a.m.


Boardman Post Office.

By Ashley Luthern



Some residents and township officials have not given their stamp of approval to a change in mailboxes at a local post office.

The office at 407 Boardman-Canfield Road in the Boardman Plaza had two freestanding mailboxes located behind the building. Last month, those boxes were replaced with one large box.

The box is located in the former drive-through lane of the post office, where people used to be able to purchase stamps and packaging materials, similar to a bank teller lane.

The new set-up is “dangerous,” particularly to seniors, said John Farina, a longtime Boardman resident.

“You can get three cars in there at most and you have to wait on Sugartree Drive,” he said, listing more problems. “Now you’ll have traffic stopped on Sugartree, which is a feeder for people driving behind the plaza. This turn is 180 degrees. If one car gets stalled, you’re up against a curb and a building.”

Farina contacted Boardman Trustee Thomas Costello about the matter. “When I drove it, I thought ‘Boy, this is awkward at best,’” Costello said.

He said that when he called Youngstown Postmaster Tom Kerns, he was told the post office did not have to do a traffic study before making a change, and that it did not have to provide advance notice about the changes.

“Basically, the decision’s been made, and they feel this is better for the post office,” Costello said.

Kerns said the change was made with consumers in mind.

“This is an operational change that allows us to empty that box more often and get it on earlier dispatch trucks,” he said.

Kerns also noted the box holds more mail than the previous two mail boxes combined.

“It’s not something we put in brand new, and we’re not at all concerned about the safety of the approach because there was a place to buy stamps and packages, and it was set for that,” Kerns said. “...We don’t make changes just because we feel like making changes.”

Still, Farina said that’s what it seemed like to him.

“Everybody knows they’ve congested that area but it’s more productive for them. That’s exactly my point,” he said. “There’s the total frustration that we seniors have with moronic decisions. Those boxes were perfectly safe where they were, and I’ve had enough.”


1Freeatlast(1991 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

Go to Cornersburg .Best post office in the area. Great people work there and it is safe

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2jussaying60(8 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

The alternative is they take it out altogether and you have to get out of your car and walk. No matter where they put it, it's for convenience. How long does it take to drop mail and pull out....

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3seminole(476 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

..and you're asking Costello and the other trustees to make sense of it and do something about it? They just blew township $ on 5 new police cars. There isn't a fully functional brain in the trio.

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4Photoman(1248 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

Personally, I find Mr. Kerns' remarks highly offensive and inconsiderate of the complaints. He seems to be like so many other government employees; condescending and arrogant. It looks what best serves the public is a non occurring thought to him.

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5Pyroc(137 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

Traffic wise it is in an unsafe location for the amount of traffic that uses the mailbox, and Sugartree Dr. Another Drive-up mailbox that is in a dangerous place in on Westchester Dr. in Austintown. It's located in an entrance drive where you have to pull into the drive going in the "wrong" direction. It's on the side where cars that are "exiting" would normally drive, and it's so close to the road that the rear of your car is partially sticking out on Westchester.
At least the Boardman Post Office offers a drive-up mailbox. The Austintown P.O. does not have one, even though there is plenty of room to put one in behind the Austintown Plaza.
In case no one has noticed, the mailboxes that were on street corners in the neighborhoods, and several of the other one's that were in front of businesses have disappeared over the past few years. It's becoming very hard to actually find a mailbox.
The P.O. is doing everything they can to cut their loses and more services will probably disappear,

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6NoBS(2819 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

Yes, Photoman, I thought that too when I read the story. I don't care of the box holds 10 times the mail the old setup did - if it's in the wrong place it's in the wrong place. I always thought when the post office had the drive-up window it was in about the stupidest location they could think of, and now that they've taken the boxes from the rear parking lot, where they weren't hurting anything, and forced anyone who simply wants to drop off a letter to wade into the gridlock. Never mind those who are southbound and must negotiate a hairpin U-turn to use it, and never mind that the former location of the boxes had plenty of maneuvering room. Kerns, in essence, says they don't have to consult anybody, and if we don't like what they did, we can shove it. What a guy.

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7nipsy(161 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

Those boxes when they were behind the Post Office were the busiest boxes I know of in the Youngstown Postal area and they worked out just fine..Very conveinient for customers. WHY MESS WITH A GOOD THING?? The Postal Service needs to return the boxes back to where they were and put customer service ahead of saving a few secons emptying those boxes.

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8endthismess(464 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

And the Post Office wonders why they are losing business. Another reason to use email more, eh?

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9redvert(2239 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

Kerns said the change was made with consumers in mind.

“This is an operational change that allows us to empty that box more often and get it on earlier dispatch trucks,” he said.

So I guess the P.O. wasn't allowed to empty the two smaller boxes more often or they were too lazy to empty the two boxes more often. Any guesses on what the truth is? Typical arrogance!

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10republicanRick(1731 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

Now the Post Office worker only has to walk 10 yards from the building to the box instead of 50 yards. Customer be damned....let's do what's best for the government worker. And you wonder why the Tea Party has been so successful.

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11steelwagon(284 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

Well there's nothing like the attitude of a lazy overpaid Govt.employee.
His snotty condesending remarks and attitude towards the people who pay his inflated salary and benefits are typical.

I guess the collection boxes in their former location were working to well so the typical Govt.solution would be to screw up something that's been working just fine for years.

The attutide of Kerns and the U.S.Postal Service in general is why they continue to bleed revenue and lose customers.
Thank Heaven for the internet and e-mail.
UPS and Fed X are a much better,safer and efficient way to ship your packages.

If you've ever lost a piece of mail sent through the U.S.Postal Service you'll know exactly why I say UPS or Fed X are a much better alternative for mailing your documents,letters and packages.

As for Kerns he's just another part of the reason the U.S.Postal Service is the screwed up money losing mess it is and in the not to distant future will cease to exist.

When he's (Kerns) standing in line at the employment office he'll get a dose of that famous Govt.I couldn't care less attitude.

Wouldn't it be much easier and better to have a civil attitude with the people you're suppose to be serving ?
Or better yet admit the P.O.made a mistake in moving the collection boxes and put them back where they were.

You see Mr.Kerns people would understand mistakes happen and you thought the change in location of the boxes was a good idea and proceeded with that notion in mind.

Now that's the change has been shown to create a saftey issue and danger for your customers wouldn't it be a benefit for all concerned to admit your mistake and put the boxes back where they can be safely used ?

No need to be snotty and arrogant.
We all make mistakes.

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12Freeatlast(1991 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

Tea Party has been so successful That has got to be dumbest comment ever put on the Vindy . Now to tea party is going to check the mail boxes !!! BIG Smile , Big Smile .

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13redvert(2239 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

Freeatlast, where were you on Nov. 2nd.? Not every Republican elected was a Tea Party candidate but I bet that most of them shared a lot of the Tea Party beliefs.

Now where does your reply rank?

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14captainlinger(663 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

I'm starting to understand where the term, "going postal", came from.

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15Jake(112 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

How about putting your letters in your mailbox at home and letting the carrier take them? Or you can get out of your car and walk into the post office.

There are lots of things to complain about in the world. This isn't one of them.

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16anothercityresident(13 comments)posted 5 years, 7 months ago

Nice thought, Jake, but if the carrier is not delivering anything to your house on the day you put the letters out, he/she is not obligated to pick them up from your house. Just don't wait until the last minute to put out anything with a deadline, as you may miss that deadline. Our family learned this the hard way.

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