West Seattle Junction drive-up mailbox will be replaced, USPS says


Apparently the drive-up/ride-up box outside the West Seattle Junction Post Office has been out of service for a few weeks; we didn’t hear about it until a flurry of inquiries that started just before the three-day MLK Day weekend. We subsequently inquired with USPS back on Tuesday and got this response today from regional spokesperson Ernie Swanson:

The drive-up mail collection box at the West Seattle Post Office has been run into by vehicles and tampered with by vandals over the years. USPS maintenance personnel have been able to repair it to keep it in service, but it became no longer serviceable. Thus, a new box has been ordered and will be placed in service as soon as it arrives. We do not have a date for delivery of the new box. We do apologize for the inconvenience this is causing our customers.

The Westwood Village drive-up/ride-up box (which had its own downtime in 2015) is in service, last we checked. And at the Junction branch, the lobby mail slot is available for walk-ins.

27 Replies to "West Seattle Junction drive-up mailbox will be replaced, USPS says"

  • norskgirl January 19, 2017 (3:25 pm)

    Thank you for posting this.  I went to this mail box early this morning and deposited mail.  I did not notice any sign posted on the side of the box (it was dark and rainy and I was not paying specific  attention to the side of the box).  However, there was nothing over the mail slot and no visible signage on the front alerting me not to leave mail.  The slot was wide open.  There were some torn pieces of paper taped above the slot, but nothing that suggested a sign or anything that piqued my attention as an alert.  So in went the mail into the wide open slot and away I drove.

    Upon seeing this posting I immediately phoned the post office.  The person I spoke with was unaware that the mail slot was wide open and that the paper sign that once covered it was now torn off.  I was assured that they would retrieve my mail and check the box.  Hopefully they will install a more secure covering over the mail slot.  I hope my mail is safe. (Unfortunately, I have had a few bad experiences with this USPS office so I feel a bit nervous that my mail will be safely retrieved…)



    • WSB January 19, 2017 (3:40 pm)

      Yikes! Sorry to hear that. I took the photo yesterday afternoon – while waiting for USPS to answer my inquiry, I wanted to be sure a new box hadn’t just turned up – and at the time there WAS paper covering the slot, soggy but still covering. It’s rained a lot since then …

  • Carole A Allen January 19, 2017 (3:55 pm)

    I dropped mail there about a week ago, also at night, and saw no sign and there was no barrier over the slot. There were cars ahead of me also dropping off mail. I wonder when it actually went out of service.

  • Lola January 19, 2017 (4:04 pm)

    The walk-in is nice if you can ever find a parking spot.  All of the spots are usually taken up by the mail carriers.  

    • Carole A Allen January 19, 2017 (6:36 pm)

      Lack of parking and/or postal vehicle parking in the slots reserved for customers 10-2, per their sign, means I often end up going to Westwood p.o., even if I have to wait for a reason to drive that far to buy stamps.

  • M January 19, 2017 (4:23 pm)

    I saw the sign go up off and on over the last month.  Each time I didn’t see the sign, I used the mailbox.  I hope all of my mail went out OK as now I wonder if it has been fully out of service in the past 4 weeks or was it intermittent until the last week or so?

  • Jon Wright January 19, 2017 (5:28 pm)

    I don’t know who runs this post office but customer service doesn’t seem like one of their core competencies.

    Here’s an idea the box is damaged beyond repair and awaiting replacement, how about getting it the $&#+@ out of there?

    Why does the West Seattle Blog have to ferret this information out? Maybe post some sort of sign with these details.

    This is the second time in recent memory a drive-up box has been damaged in the area. Perhaps the post office could stock a spare somewhere in Seattle?

    If I can think of this stuff, why can’t the crack staff at the post office?

  • WGA January 19, 2017 (5:35 pm)

    At least it did not catch fire like the Westwood box did! I hope this one is replaced more quickly than that one was.

  • BG January 19, 2017 (8:46 pm)

    Jon…. I am with you.  This PO has turned into one of the worst in the past couple of years.  They are clueless and totally unhelpful when there is a problem.  We have them hold our mail for pickup when we are out of town and they never get the instruction right. Last time came home to 3 weeks of mail sitting on our porch in one of their tubs.  The manager said he would yell at the delivery person …..  that is great leadership. 

    • Seaweed January 19, 2017 (11:33 pm)

      Didnt you know? No D or R administration wants the USPS to function at a level that makes it a proud American Institution anymore. Corporatize your Public Services Nation. $$$>1% Yeehaw!

      • 22blades January 20, 2017 (6:10 am)

        Agree. There isn’t the political will or fortitude to support the USPS (or any serious public rail initiative). The USPS has a function beyond just the mail like legal notices. It’s easy to slam the organization or its workers but I don’t think that many if us would fare any better making a living there. When was the last time you actually talked to your mailman? They know your neighborhood probably better than you.

        • Jon Wright January 20, 2017 (7:28 pm)

          In our neighborhood, it seems like we have a different carrier every day. And there is no rhyme or reason to when the mail gets delivered. Sometimes it comes late morning/early afternoon. Other times, it comes after 6:00 p.m. I get the sense the days of the letter carrier who is as familiar as family are gone.

  • Roxy January 19, 2017 (10:03 pm)

    Jon, I’m guessing a steel mail box that large is pretty darn heavy.

    • Jon Wright January 20, 2017 (1:41 am)

      I’m sure it is heavy. Nevertheless, if it was my job to ensure nobody inadvertently put mail in this out-of-service box, I guarantee you I would mobilize whatever crew was necessary to drag it out of there. Whomever is in charge over there is either asleep at the switch or just doesn’t give a rip. A piece of paper taped over the slot is the best they can come up with for taking that box out of service? Seriously?

      • Tim Robitaille January 20, 2017 (10:48 am)

        Well Jon, 

        Someone is listening, the mail box is gone.

  • 22blades January 20, 2017 (5:57 am)

    I am suprised it lasted this long actually. The new box should have concrete filled steel bollards on both sides and painted approaches that align the vehicles better. Better task lighting wouldn’t hurt either since its used in the dark for alot of the time. Anything to keep people from hitting it.

  • wetone January 20, 2017 (11:10 am)

    Went by PO on tuesday early afternoon to drop mail off. Pulled up to drop box after watching others use it. Thankfully noticed the large door on drop box was open, still had basket inside. Double parked ran inside with line of people going out door as usual and stuck my head around corner telling PO worker at counter the mail drop box door was open and people were using it. Person at counter just said yep……………. I couldn’t believe it. There was nothing stopping one from grabbing mail or whole basket and running.  As said above PO needs to spend $5k on steel bollards filled with concrete at corners of drop box, problem solved on that issue….

  • Rob January 20, 2017 (2:35 pm)

    No ETA?  How do they not have spare/replacements sitting around someplace for rapid replacement?  Was the same story at Westwood which took months.  I can’t get my head around how they operate.

    • Jon Wright January 20, 2017 (2:59 pm)

      …and it’s not like they’re a logistics company or anything. :-/

      How long do you think it would take FedEx or UPS to get a replacement box sent wherever it needed to  go?

      • Rob January 20, 2017 (4:40 pm)

        Right?  Fedex/UPS….probably before anyone realized it had happened.

  • Brian January 21, 2017 (6:45 am)

    There’s a big difference between the cost structure of FedEx and UPS and the Postal Service. Only one of those three has to go to every house, every day. The decline of the Postal Service is due in part to UPS and FedEx taking the most lucrative part of the business away from the Postal Service. You asked for it…You got it.

  • Jon Wright January 21, 2017 (7:56 am)

    What does cost structure have to do with this? They had a broken box sitting right in front of their store and to take it out of service, they went all out (in rainy Seattle) and taped a piece of paper over the slot. And then they didn’t seem to care if people unknowingly put mail in that out-of-service box or if it was insecure. The post office may have some structural economic challenges but I don’t see how those came into play here.

  • Jim P. January 22, 2017 (12:27 pm)

    Funny how the government, both parties, can easily find  money for $5,000 “bomb proof” trash cans for airports or other public locations that won’t see a “terrorist” in a thousand years but can’t seem to put in a vandal-proof mail box when those are almost constant targets these days.

    Even regular mailboxes seem to be almost constantly being vandalized.  One I use downtown (near the foot of Harbor Steps) is almost obscured with graffiti and has been for the two years I’ve been using it.

  • alki_2008 January 22, 2017 (5:49 pm)

    On a tangential note – I’m still mourning the loss of the Chase ATM outside the Alki Starbucks.  :(

  • face less January 22, 2017 (9:12 pm)

    welcome to the hood

  • PSPS January 31, 2017 (12:55 pm)

    So, it’s 12 days later and the only thing that’s changed is the box has been removed.  So people have to find a place to park, walk in, and stuff their envelopes into the wall slot which is now overflowing.

  • Seabruce February 1, 2017 (12:19 am)

    Would be nice if they allowed extra parking while the box is gone and people need to park and go inside.

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