Fresh off a busy holiday season, the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is already preparing for the new year with a number of new changes. But while these updates have come with some warning, the agency has also been forced to make certain changes that are effective immediately. Now, the USPS is closing 50 post offices in the U.S., with no immediate information on when they might reopen. Read on to find out the latest on the Postal Service's temporary mass closures.
READ THIS NEXT: USPS Is Making Even More Changes to Your Mail, Starting Jan. 22.
The Postal Service has made other mass closures recently.
Postal facilities have faced a litany of problems recently, forcing mass closures.
In mid-December, the USPS temporarily closed around 200 post offices "due to weather." The closures stretched throughout five states that were battling a massive snowstorm at the time: Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin.
Just a few weeks later, the Postal Service announced that Minnesota, Nebraska, and South Dakota were facing temporary postal closures again. The agency shut down a total of 115 facilities throughout the three states on Jan. 3, again citing weather concerns.
At the time, The Washington Post reported that a "string of powerful winter storms" was moving across the Central U.S., pushing record amounts of snowfall across parts of northeastern Nebraska, southeastern South Dakota, and southwestern Minnesota.
Unfortunately, the closures don't stop there.
The agency is now closing 50 more post offices.
All of the impacted post offices in Nebraska, South Dakota, and Minnesota have since reopened but customers elsewhere are now experiencing issues.
The latest update to the USPS Service Alerts website indicates that the agency just temporarily shuttered a large number of facilities, affecting two new states: Nevada and California. A total of 50 post offices were closed on Jan. 9 and Jan. 10, but one state is bearing the brunt of it.
Nevada is facing just one closure—the Postal Service shuttered the Meyers-Snow post office in South Lake Tahoe, Nevada, on Jan. 9. But the other 49 closures are in California. The temporarily shuttered facilities in this state include the Lakeshore Post Office, Topanga Post Office, Olema Post Office, Canyon Post Office, and Soquel Post Office.
Many of these facilities have been closed for similar reasons.
Once again, it largely comes down to weather.
Both the Meyers-Snow facility in Nevada and the Canyon Post Office in California are closed "due to severe winter storms," according to the USPS. The Postal Service also announced the closure of the Soquel Post Office and the Olema Post Office in California on Jan. 9. According to the separate alerts, the Soquel facility is closed "due to safety concerns" and the Olema facility is "closed due to flooding."
On Jan. 10, the agency updated its Service Alerts to include the Lakeshore Post Office and Topanga Post Office. These two California facilities are "temporarily closed due to weather conditions," but the USPS cited concerns over "road conditions" for the Topanga closure as well. During these closures, the USPS said that Lakeshore customers' "mail and retail services" will be available at Big Creek Post Office, while Topanga customers should go to the Malibu Post Office.
Retail operations at the remaining 45 post offices in California have all been "temporarily closed due to power outages," according to the USPS. The facilities impacted by this include those in cities such as Burson, Orleans, and Willow Creek. "The offices are providing mail delivery and retail services in manual mode until power is restored," the agency said.
These are not the only facilities that are currently closed.
This recent temporary mass closure only affects customers in two states, but other facilities are still closed right now.
Back in October, the Postal Service temporarily shuttered the Pemberton Post Office in Ohio and the Stanley Post Office in New York. Both were closed "due to safety concerns," as the Pemberton facility is dealing with fire damage and the Stanley Post Office is undergoing roof repairs. Both remain closed.
In November, the USPS suspended all operations at the Wisner Post Office in Louisiana. This facility is also in need of repairs and will remain closed "until repairs can be made," according to the agency.
And just this month, the Postal Service temporarily closed facilities in North Dakota and Michigan. In North Dakota, the Stanton Post Office was shut down "due to water damage and asbestos abatement," according to the agency. In Michigan, the Orchards Mall Post Office in Benton Harbor was "closed due to safety issues," the USPS said. This might also be the result of water damage, however, as The Herald-Palladium reported that the entire Orchards Mall is currently closed to customers after a water main burst.