Residents complain plowing knocked down mailboxes

Some Central Indiana residents have complained about their mailboxes getting damaged by snow plows or the recent plowing.

In Johnson County, about 40 people called the Highway Department to sound off.

In Greenwood, homeowner Cassandra Chandler-Dues showed Fox 59 her mailbox on Stop 11 that was knocked over last week during the Blizzard.

“It actually was leaned over a little bit and twisted a little bit to the right, she explained.

She wasn’t alone. She said about 10 mailboxes down her street also suffered the same fate.

“There were about 3 of them that were on the ground, and the others were twisted the same as ours,” said Chandler-Dues.

Johnson County Highway Director Luke Mastin said property can be damaged during plowing, but 40 calls is high for a single storm event.

He said the County will pay for or fix the damaged mailbox as long as there is evidence that a plow truck actually touched it.

Otherwise, the resident is out of luck, because the County is not responsible for any damages the snow may cause.

“The more common situation is where the plow and the truck do not make contact with the mailbox, but a mailbox is knocked down or over from the snow that comes off of the plow,” he said. “In those situations, the County does not reimburse the property owner for those damages.”

In Indianapolis, there are no exceptions. According to Department of Public Work’s spokeswoman Lesley Malone, the City will pick up the cost to fix a resident’s property as long as the damage was a result of their actions.

A resident should simply call the Mayor’s Action Hotline and then an inspector will come out to investigate the scene, she explained. A result could take up to 90 days to be determined.

Mastin said the best way for homeowners to prepare is to check their mailbox post for any rotting. A good post should survive a season, he said.

For Chandler-Dues, she gave up and bought a more sturdy mailbox.

“Last winter we had probably two or three and that’s why we moved to this kind mailbox, because it’s a little bit easier to fix,” she said.

She said if she’s known she could’ve gotten help, she would’ve chose that option instead.

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