Believe it or not, the check actually is in the mail. And the folks trying to send it aren’t happy about it.
“We're going to have to pay penalties,” complained Aimee Petersen, whose husband put a tax payment in the outgoing mail at their neighborhood box just before it broke. “Some of these are very time sensitive things.”
Petersen is one of several Habersham residents who can’t get or receive mail at their box.
“It's been over a week that we have not received any mail whatsoever,” said neighbor Heidi Shute. “We're just extremely frustrated that nothing's been done.”
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Regional officials with the U.S. Postal Service say they’re looking into the matter, but additional details weren’t available as of Thursday afternoon.
After a couple of days receiving no mail, residents say they caught up with their letter carrier to ask what was happening. According a residents, a fill-in carrier jammed a key in their box Sept. 13 and it hasn’t been in use since. Multiple residents said they were told only one person in the greater Charlotte area can fix the letter boxes, and it wasn’t clear when theirs would be repaired.
As of Thursday, more than a week later, signs still weren’t in place letting folks not to put outgoing mail in their boxes. Three days went by, Petersen said, before residents realized something was wrong. More than a dozen addresses are impacted.
Residents at the neighborhood mail center when the letter carrier arrives each day can get what’s addressed to them. Otherwise, they have to go down to the Fort Mill Post Office at specific hours. Which residents say has been a problem.
“There's several of us who have packages that have been delivered to us that are just sitting in the box,” Petersen said. “And when we go to ask about our mail from when the box broke, the post office says they don’t have it. The accumulated mail is still somewhere at the post office, but we’re not sure where.”
While plenty of mail hits the trash before a typical homeowner even opens it, plenty more mail involves sensitive information. One neighbor is waiting of a letter of denial in a case, to then start an appeals process. Petersen’s husband has a box from Amazon that’s marked delivered, but he doesn’t have it and the post office hasn’t told the family where it is.
“My daughter's birthday presents are in there,” Shute said.
The metal box, typical to apartment complexes and some of the newer neighborhoods in Fort Mill, has a section circled where the broken lock is. Residents have been in contact with local and regional postal officials. Petersen said she can’t understand what’s taking so long when the issue seems like “just a matter of getting a locksmith out there to fix it.”
“It’s frustrating,” she said. “It’s really disappointing how they’re handling it.”
Shute said she and other neighbors have been at the mail center or post office “every single day” since they realized something was wrong, and haven’t yet gotten answers. While simply having to go down to the post office to get mail would be a hassle, especially with work schedules limiting hours people are available, Shute said she could live with that solution.
If it were working.
“People have tried that,” she said, “and they say they don’t know where the mail is.”