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Inspectors playing vital role after storms

Irma inspectors story
Assistant Inspector in Charge Delany De Leon-Colòn, left, and Los Angeles Postal Inspector Team Leader David Focht talk near a tent at the Marathon, FL, Post Office.

Employees who are glad to be back to work after Hurricane Irma — and customers who are happy to be receiving mail again — can thank the Postal Inspection Service for its role in the recovery process.

Like they did in Hurricane Harvey’s aftermath, postal inspectors are helping USPS resume operations in storm-ravaged communities.

The top priorities: accounting for employees, inspecting facilities for damage and making sure all delivery routes and postal workplaces are safe.

“It’s been an emotional roller coaster for all affected by the storm,” said Ivan Ramirez, a Miami-based inspector.

This week, inspectors are working in postal facilities between Miami and Key West, FL, as well as Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, including locations that were battered by Hurricane Maria.

In some areas, the Inspection Service is helping to set up tents where customers can pick up mail and packages.

The inspectors are also aiding employees who’ve lost everything and have no access to bank accounts, food or water.

“We’re providing them the help and resources they need,” said Assistant Inspector in Charge Delany De Leon-Colòn.

Ramirez credits the Postal Service’s extensive emergency planning with helping to get back to normal quickly.

“It makes our job easier because of such dedicated postal employees,” he said.

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