Couple relieved after yard damaged by postal service repaired

Published: May. 22, 2019 at 1:12 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - A Richmond couple says they were completely ignored by the U.S. Postal Service after a mail carrier’s truck left their front yard damaged.

Ethel and Bill Brooks say a mail carrier’s truck left grooves and deep tire tracks in their yard, after it got stuck in the mud taking a short-cut to drop off their mail.

The damage was so bad the mail carrier had to call a tow truck to pull out the truck. The Brooks say they’ve been trying to get the postal service to take responsibility and fix their yard since March.

U.S.P.S. declined to meet with NBC12 at the Brooks’ home. After reaching out to a district manager for the state, steps were put in motion to fix the problem that has gone on way too long.

“It put big ruts in the yard. We couldn’t get the mower in here. I used the weed eater to get that grass down,” said Ethel.

At first glance, the trail of yard damage the mail carrier and her stuck truck left behind seems inconsequential.

“I think she wanted to pull through there and throw the package on the porch. We’ve seen it happen before. Just didn’t want to get out. She didn’t want to walk,” said Ethel.

Bill’s physical limitations are a big deal for the couple as well.

“I have no balance. No balance whatsoever. If I get out of this chair right now I’d fall down," said Bill.

He can’t repair his yard himself and worries about Ethel.

“It’s terrible that I can’t help her and she’s got to do it all. She waits on me hand and foot,” said Bill.

“It’s a big deal to us because he can’t do anything. I would have to hire somebody to come in here and that would cost me money which we don’t have.”

Both remember the day Ethel grabbed the camera for evidence after hearing a revving engine.

“We didn’t know what the noise was. It was loud and going on and on. I opened the door and come out on the porch and this is what I saw. She was stuck right here," she said.

“We had so much rain. That truck was not getting out. No it was not getting out. She was sitting there spinning her wheels. I asked her what are you doing? What do you think you’re doing? She never would answer me.”

Ethel promptly reported the damage, and was prompted to Call 12 for a resolution.

“They said somebody would get back in touch with us within two or three business days. Nobody has and that’s why we called you," she said.

The couple said they emailed Corporate Communications, and received a response a few days later: “Local management met with the customer, apologized, and is working on a satisfactory resolution."

“I want some top soil in there and I want some fertilizer on it and seed on it. So you know how to fix it. You just can’t fix it. I know very well how to fix it. I built this whole place here," said Bill.

The manager at the Genito post office came out and took pictures, and contacted three landscape companies. The post office will select a company to do the work.

The couple is finally relieved, as landscapers have come out to fix the yard.

The Brooks said they were told there was a communication break down between the main post office and the branch that delivers their mail.

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