page contains information about the Hurricane Katrina aftermath
as it relates to the United States Postal Service.
Aerial photos of New Orleans
postal facilities (post-Katrina)
Employee National Emergency Hotline (1-888-363-7462)
Hurricane Katrina Updates
"The Postal Service has received approval from the Office of
Personnel Management (OPM) under its Voluntary Early Retirement
Authority (VERA) to offer VER to career employees in the
Louisiana and Mississippi Districts. The VER effective dates for full-time employees for this VER offer will be
January 31, 2006, February 28, 2006 or March 31, 2006. The VER effective date for part-time employees (PTF and PTR)
for this VER offer will be
- APWU: USPS to Offer Early Retirement to
New Orleans mail takes long route home
"Mail delivery has resumed on half the city's routes
since Hurricane Katrina struck on August 29 but residents of
entire ZIP codes still need to pick up letters at a temporarily
assembled set of caravans under the shadow of the Superdome.
Residents say it takes up to 10 days to receive their post,
which can still be mixed with letters sent closer to the date of
the storm. Some make frequent trips to the pick-up center,
waiting anxiously for wage checks and insurance compensation."
Photos: 1 |
Offer Voluntary Early Outs to Employees Severely Impacted by
"The Postal Service has received authority from the Office of
Personnel Management to offer Voluntary Early Retirements (VER)
to postal employees (including Postmasters) in areas that were
severely impacted by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. The USPS will
determine who will be offered VER's in the storm torn areas of
AL, LA, MS, and Houston."
APWU: Vacancies for Katrina-Impacted Employees
"The APWU has been provided with lists of residual vacancies
that may be available to employees displaced by Hurricane
Sept. 27 Memorandum of Understanding [PDF] between the APWU
and USPS stipulates that impacted employees may request
voluntary transfers to post offices throughout the country. If
practicable, such requests will be approved."
USPS and Unions Reach Agreement on Work Issues
Arising from Hurricane Katrina
"The specific provisions in the union agreements differ, but the
main intent of both MOU's is to minimize the effects of
dislocation and inconvenience to employees while maintaining the
efficiency of Postal Service operations in Katrina's aftermath."
APWU Memorandum (PDF) |
APWU, USPS Reach Agreement On Workers
Displaced by Katrina
Displaced employees rebuilding their lives
"An initial assessment found that 37 customer service
facilities In the Houston District and 12 in the Dallas District
were damaged or without power. And the city of Beaumont, TX,
remained under a mandatory evacuation order. In Louisiana, the
Lake Charles area was most affected, with six offices flooded
and the city closed to all but essential personnel - which
includes USPS employees. Floods and power outages also affected
offices in the 703 and 705 ZIP Codes." Photo: A Postal Inspector sifts through debris in
Cameron, La. Photo 1 |
Mail Piles Up in Wake of Katrina As Carriers
'No One Responded Better Than U.S. Postal Service'
Katrina took homes, but the mail still comes
Katrina reduces supply of lockable mailboxes
Rita: Postal Service Prepares to Re-Establish Service
Hurricane Rita Updates
Katrina: All present and accounted for!
USPS Link Online: "As of yesterday, all 6,052 employees were
accounted for - with no serious physical injuries."
Postal Inspection Service and Postal Police
Officers Assist in Katrina Recovery
Hurricane Headed for Gulf Coast
Hurricane Rita Updates
And now - rebuild: Post offices, communities
emerge from devastation
USPS Link Online:
"In the weeks following Hurricane Katrina, USPS focused on three
things - respond, reconnect and re-establish. Now, we can add
rebuild to that list. From such humble beginnings as a tent
set up in a parking lot, service is resuming. In Waveland, MS,
the Post Office was completely destroyed by the storm. But
employees are back at work, helping their friends and neighbors
begin the process of rebuilding their lives."
Postal Service suspending services in areas
covered by mandatory evacuations
Texans flee colossal hurricane: Storm is
third most intense ever
NALC/USPS Work to Fill Vacancies with Displaced
Gulf Coast Carriers
"Because of the emergency nature of
this situation, the Postal Service has agreed that the temporary
placement of these employees in local installations is
appropriate," NALC President Young said. "We are working with the Postal
Service on identifying vacancies that currently exist and it is
our intent to accommodate as many displaced employees as
possible who are seeking transfers to post offices where they
are now located." (NALC Bulletin)
Postal Service starts drive for hurricane
Postal Service opens offices in Mississippi
APWU Donates $60,000 to Postal Employees
Arslan donates uniforms to postal workers in
NPR Audio: PMG Discusses Mail Service
Dallas District Welcomes Displaced Employees
"About 60 Gulf Coast USPS employees displaced by Hurricane
Katrina had an orientation meeting at North Texas P&DC last
week. "You are our family - our postal family," Dallas District
Manager Carl January told the employees. "We are going to do
whatever we can to comfort you and to help you."
NPMHU urges action on Bush order that cuts
Katrina wages and benefits
PMG Thanks Employees During Gulf Coast Tour
"Postmaster General Jack Potter yesterday visited the Gulf Coast
-- meeting with employees and touring postal facilities and the
Louisiana Emergency Operations Center (EOC) -- in communities
hit hard by Hurricane Katrina." Photo: PMG Potter stands on the
slab of the former Waveland, Mississippi Post Office. Photo
UPS delivers some comfort along with
Is Donating $250,000 to the Postal Employees' Relief Fund
We Deliver -
to the Gulf Coast
Postal Service Making Progress in
New Orleans-area Post Offices are back in service, including
eight that came on line Monday. Home delivery is not yet
restored in all of those areas, but customers in ZIP Codes with
working Post Offices can receive mail at the counter. USPS is
using more than 30 generators to power facilities without
electricity in Louisiana and is using 26 mobile buildings where
Post Office buildings were damaged." Photo: PMG Potter
meets with a Louisiana carrier who lost his home.
Mail service resumes in many Katrina-stricken
office popular in Astrodome shelter
"This may be the age of cell phones and the Internet, but when
it comes to bringing news from home and money, nothing here
beats the U.S. Postal Service. The phrase "the check is in the
mail" has taken on life-and-death consequences for evacuees."
Photo: A displaced customer receives a FEMA relief check at the
Astrodome. (USPS photo)
Part city, part 'Third World country'
Service grants New Orleans carrier
temporary work in Wisconsin
Florida letter carrier rescues family from
carbon monoxide poisoning
USPS: Relief is in sight
"Hurricane relief efforts continued this weekend and USPS
employees stood where they always have in times of crisis - by
their friends, neighbors, co-workers and their communities.
Whether it was helping unload shipments of ice or
tractor-trailers filled with care packages, USPS employees were
Hurricane reroutes New Orleans postal
worker to Wisconsin
District Manager's Decision Angers Postal Workers
TOLD TO WORK DAY AFTER KATRINA: "They
willfully and blatantly ignored the safety and health of people
by ordering people to report to work and stay at work," said
Melanie Bennett, president of the Hattiesburg area Local 1311 of
the American Postal Workers Union. She and other workers are
calling for a congressional investigation into the actions of
Mississippi's District Manager James Daily, who was responsible
for updating a phone message that advises workers whether they
should report to work." PHOTO: A letter carrier delivers
mail in Biloxi, Mississippi. Photo 1, 2.
Postal Service Delivers: 80% of Mail
Postal Service Continues to Restore Mail
Services Along Gulf Coast
Catalogers Shift Circulation Away From
Post Office Opens at the Astrodome
"IMAGE: While lines develop at the windows of a makeshift U.S.
Post Office in a former ticket booth outside the Astrodome,
Terrelle Calaiste of New Orleans uses a towel to cover his head
from the blazing noon-day sun and waits for the rush to subside
before heading up the ramp for his mail on Friday, Sept. 9,
2005, in Houston. Survivors of hurricane Katrina were getting
their first deliveries of general mail on Friday at their
temporary home in the Astrodome."
APWU: Red Cross Shelters Serving Katrina
Mississippi Postal Workers Must Report
e-NAPUS Newsletter: Katrina's Legislative
Service Reestablished at Many Louisiana Post
"The Postmaster General and each District Manager sent a
Newsbreak yesterday to each district asking employees if
they know the whereabouts of any displaced employees temporarily
sheltering in their districts to urge those employees to contact
the Postal Service by calling 1-877-477-3273."
USPS Reopens Some ZIPs to Standard Mail
Houston Post Offices To Accept Food Donations
APWU: Contact Information
UPS Joins Louisiana Emergency Relief Team
Katrina Damage Could Surpass $100 Million
"The U.S. Postal Service sustained infrastructure damage of
roughly $100 million, an agency official said yesterday, as a
result of Hurricane Katrina, which ravaged much of the Gulf
Coast last month. Thomas G. Day, senior vice president of
government relations, told reporters yesterday that the damage
extends to buildings, vehicles, processing equipment in the
buildings, retail equipment and vending equipment."
Displaced and evacuated postal employees
may pick up payroll checks at the Baton Rouge P&DC this Thursday
2,000 Postal Workers Missing
NALC Donates $50,000 for Katrina Aid to
Postal Employees' Relief Fund
Post office tries to forward mail,
establishes 'phantom box number'
MS - SEPTEMBER 3: Residents wait for their social security
checks at a post office September 3, 2005 in Gulfport,
CITY'S NUMBED SURVIVORS DWELL IN A 'MAD MAX'
HORROR WORLD OF THE APOCALYPSE
"As we drove back on the freeway, I saw a man and boy poking through an abandoned mail truck
covered in gang graffiti."
Letter carrier ditches route for rescuer's role
"A Port St. Lucie letter carrier
shocked his bosses Tuesday when he turned up on National Public
Radio -- and said he was more than 750 miles away. Jim Osborne,
47, was scheduled to report to the Orange Avenue post office in
Fort Pierce but ended up on his airboat in the flooded streets
of New Orleans, searching for survivors of Hurricane Katrina. His bosses didn't find out until their drive to work Tuesday
morning, when they heard Osborne on NPR's Morning Edition,
said Joseph Breckenridge, a U.S. Postal Service spokesman. "I'm
a letter carrier with the postal service, and I will be AWOL,"
Osborne said in the radio report, which detailed rescue efforts
near the French Quarter."
USPS Returns to Some Flooded Areas
PMG looking for Katrina-displaced
Postal Worker Returns Home to Jefferson Parish
"Back on Ole Miss Drive: Drew Oddo carried televisions out of
the bedrooms of his son and daughter. Drew and his father, Bob,
who also lives on the street, drove in from Houston through the
night. Pine needles crunched under Bob Oddo's feet as he
surveyed the damage to his grandmother's 100-year-old baby grand
piano. "You deal with it," said Mr. Oddo, 53, a postal worker.
"That's it. It reminds me of the Bill Cosby routine: There's
always somebody who's had it worse. But what about the guy who
has it worse than anybody. That's me." (Dallas Morning News,
Finding Employees, Delivering the Mail
"More than 2,800 employees in the Hurricane Katrina disaster
area have contacted the Postal Service to let us know they are
safe and to give us their contact information. The national
media has helped us get the word out to employees by publicizing
our toll-free number, 1-877-477-3273, as have employees with
information about displaced employees. Many of our employees who
lived in the storm's path are now scattered across the country,
living temporarily with relatives and friends or in hotels."
Map showing status of Katrina-affected post
Postal services set up at shelters
Postal Service Moves to Reconnect With
USPS Struggles Delivering to Disaster Area
Obtains Aerial Photos of New Orleans Postal Facilities
Maps PostalMag.com has been able to obtain high resolution
aerial photos that show the extent of flooding to areas with New
Orleans postal facilities.
Helping Our Postal Family
PMG Potter: "I was proud to learn
that some employees who sought shelter outside of the affected
areas reported to local Post Offices for work and to do their
part to help in this time of crisis. We've received calls from
other affected employees who plan to relocate temporarily to
live with family members all across America. They are calling to
ask if they can work rather than be forced to use leave or go
without pay at some point in the future."
Unlike some federal agencies, the USPS
USPS Photos of Hurricane Damage
Cleaning up records mess
APWU Local President Helping Hurricane Victims
and Mary Jo Hurley of College Station say they expect to open
their home to displaced postal workers. As president of the
local branch of the American Postal Workers Union, Tim Hurley is
coordinating an effort to find food and shelter for his
counterparts from Louisiana. He said the postal workers union
based in Houston sent out an e-mail with the emergency number so
postal workers can call in and find out how to get their
paychecks and insurance funds. He then decided that those who
end up in the Brazos Valley should have a place to stay and food
to eat. "They're our people, so we should take care of them," he
said. "We're ready to help for weeks or months or as long as it
takes." IMAGE: Astrodome gets own zip code.
Evacuees can get free post office boxes
Gene Del Polito: One of Katrina's many
Information for Mail Handlers Affected by
Service sets up centers for mail pickup
"The post office set up locations
Thursday for residents of the area devastated by Hurricane
Katrina to pick up their first-of-the-month checks, and said it
is no longer accepting magazines or bulk mail for delivery to
the damaged area. First-class mail for New Orleans is currently
being held in Dallas and will be forwarded from there."
APWU: Hurricane Katrina Update
displaced employees to notify the Postal Service of their
"The Postal Service continues to do everything possible to
deliver mail to as many customers as can be reached safely in
the flooded and wreckage-strewn areas in Louisiana, Mississippi,
Alabama and Florida that were in the path of Hurricane Katrina.
Power outages, closed roads, high water and other obstacles are
making it difficult for the Postal Service to reach customers —
as well as many of our employees — in the areas hit hard by the
storm. About 2.3 million residents remain without electric power
and fuel is in short supply due to the loss of refining capacity
along the Gulf Coast.
The Postal Service is very concerned about the safety and
well-being of its approximately 6,000 employees in the disaster
area, particularly those who haven’t been in contact. Employees
are urged to use the Employee Service Line, 1-877-477-3273,
to notify the Postal Service of their whereabouts.
This is the same toll-free number for PostalEase. Callers
will hear: “If you are an employee in a work location that is
closed due to Hurricane Katrina, press 1.” The employee will be
transferred to a USPS Call Center agent, who will collect the
It is very important that employees displaced by the
hurricane call this number so the Postal Service will be able to
contact them to make sure they are paid and to give them
important job-related information.
If you are in contact with any employees displaced by Katrina,
please ask them to call 1-877-477-3273 toll-free and
answer the questions asked by the USPS Call Center agent so the
Postal Service will be able to contact the employee with pay and
temporary work assignment information."
APWU: Contact Information
"APWU members affected by Hurricane Katrina can call special
phone numbers to find out where and when to report to work.
There is also a special contact number for members who are
unable to work:
when and where to report to work: 1-888-363-7462
management of inability to work: 1-877-477-3273
The pay of
employees who use direct deposit will not be interrupted. The
APWU is discussing with management options for paying employees
who do not have direct deposit.
need of immediate relief should contact
or call 1-800-621-3360."
USPS Establishes National Emergency Hotline
"A hurricane is no match for an informed workforce.
"In the aftermath of hurricanes Charley and Frances, Postal
employees in Florida have turned to the USPS National Emergency
Hotline for an information lifeline. By calling this number -
1-888-363-7462 - they've learned about facility closings,
changes in reporting times and other workplace information.
Recent experience in Florida shows that local phone message
systems are too vulnerable to power failures and other
storm-related damage. The national hotline number provides
employees with a number to call outside their immediate area.
This dedicated toll-free system was developed by a partnership
between Emergency Preparedness and Information Technology.
Originally launched in April in support of biohazard detection
system deployment, the hotline number has proved a valuable link
for employees in hurricane-ravaged Florida.
When employees call the number in the event of an emergency,
they're prompted for the first three digits of the ZIP Code
where they work. They’ll hear information specific to their
district. Districts are responsible for updating their own
If the caller is hearing-impaired and uses Telecommunications
Relay Services (TRS), they will call their state TRS toll-free
number and the TRS operator will handle the call.
Add this number to your rolodex: 1-888-363-7462. When hurricanes
- or ice storms, blizzards, hazards or threats - happen, stay
informed. Our customers count on us."
APWU: Katrina Update
"Parts of Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, and Mississippi have been
declared disaster areas as a result of Hurricane Katrina.
Human Relations Department has compiled the following
information to aid our members and their loved ones in efforts
to receive assistance.
The Red Cross disaster relief focuses on meeting people's
immediate disaster-related needs, such as shelter, food, and
health and mental health services.
Katrina should contact their local Red Cross Chapter. Local
chapters can be found at
www.redcross.org or by calling 866-Get–INFO (866-438-4636).
Please note that many of these chapters were also impacted by
Katrina: You may have to contact a different nearby office.
We hope to
provide a list of local Red Cross Chapters in the four affected
states to this page on Wednesday.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) prepares the
nation for all hazards and manages federal response and recovery
efforts following any national incident. FEMA’s Disaster Program
includes up to $26,200 in cash grants per eligible individual or
Lodging expenses reimbursement (for a hotel or motel)
Rental assistance (cash payment for a temporary rental unit or
a manufactured home)
Home repair cash grant
Home replacement cash grant
Permanent housing construction in rare circumstances
Other Needs Assistance
Medical, dental, funeral costs
Other disaster-related needs
residents and business owners in the designated Counties can
begin the disaster application process by registering online at
or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (1-800-621-3362), or 1-800-462-7585
(TTY). The toll-free telephone numbers will operate 24 hours,
seven days a week, until further notice.
the expected high volume of calls, registering online is
encouraged. If registering by phone, owners of commercial
properties and residents with only minor losses are urged to
wait a few days before calling so those whose homes were
destroyed or heavily damaged can be served first.
insurance coverage should contact their insurance company or
agent before calling to report losses and, if necessary, to
request an advance or partial payment of their settlement."
Steal Postal Truck
PHOTO: (Right) Armed Texas game wardens surround a group of individuals
who stole a mail truck to escape the flooded areas of New
Orleans East August 31, 2005. The people were freed but forced
to continue on foot. (Photo 1 | Photo 2)
The photos beg the question: "What else has been stolen from
Government working to get SSI checks to
Postal Service Stops Accepting Standard Mail
in Affected Areas
Postal Service Relocating New Orleans Center
to Baton Rouge
Hurricane may delay married TSP participants'
Hurricane-related messages in PostalMag.com
Service to Divert Entergy Bills
USPS: In Katrina's wake
disrupts service in Southwest and Southeast areas
"Postal officials in the Southwest and Southeast areas continue
to assess the impact of Hurricane Katrina on postal operations
in Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi and Florida. Many roads and
most airports in the areas most heavily affected by the storms
remain closed. Because of the inaccessibility of some areas, a
full determination of Katrina’s long-term service impacts has
not been completed. But every effort is being made to restore
retail and delivery service where possible and where it can be
The safety of our employees remains the number one priority and
efforts remain underway in each district to contact all affected
employees. Employee Assistance Program counselors are standing
by to assist employees in hurricane-ravaged locations as soon as
conditions permit their entry into those areas.
With a number of key processing facilities out of service, all
mailers that drop ship into affected areas have been advised of
service conditions and the availability of alternate
Service updates will continue to be posted on
As service is restored in some areas, destruction and heavy
damage to homes and businesses will prevent regular carrier
delivery. Residential and business customers will be notified of
alternate delivery arrangements as soon as they have been
The Postal Inspection Service will be working with Louisiana
District officials today to make an initial determination of the
extent of infrastructure damage in New Orleans and surrounding
200 post offices without electricity in
Mississippi; 1st-of-the-month checks
Gulf Coast Businesses Struggle in Katrina's
Submerged mail trucks at Mobile's downtown