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Congratulations! After hacking that rigorous postal battery exam 473-e and handling yourself well in your postal job interview, you’ve finally received that long-awaited call and are told to begin work as a mail carrier in the postal service location you applied for. You certainly have a lot to celebrate about: Not only are you going to receive competitive pay, you are also eligible to get other benefits and perks that come with your position.
But while the act of delivering mail and memorizing your assigned route may seem like a piece of cake, you need to be able to drive skillfully and maneuver your vehicle very well if you want to beat deadlines and do your work within the given time frame. Many postal workers will tell you that USPS supervisors are not exactly forgiving when it comes to your postal performance.
Here are some driving tips to help you do just that:
- Practice driving your mail delivery car and putting mails in mail boxes from the passenger side. Getting out from your vehicle and putting the mails in the mailboxes can take up too much of your time and put you behind schedule.
- Practice stopping and starting quickly at mailboxes without hitting them. This requires a bit of skill, mind you, since if you get too close, they can scrape or dent your vehicle.
- If you are using your own vehicle, be sure that your insurance will cover you doing the Postal Route. You should also invest in bright orange magnets on your rear bumper and flashing lights on top of your vehicles. This will warn other motorists of your presence and help prevent accidents. If the post office won’t provide you with this equipment, you may be able to write these off as reasonable tax deductions in your job. Inquire from the postmaster before you start.
- Again, if you are using your own vehicle, the USPS will shoulder mileage. Ask what the rates are going to be per mile as well as other things that the post office will cover when you are using your own vehicle.
- Always get a good night’s sleep so that you come to work alert. Your driving accuracy and skill are negatively affected if you don’t have sufficient rest or are under the influence of alcohol (you should never drink on the job) or taking drugs. If you are taking any maintenance medications, make sure that you know what the effects are going to be on your reflexes by talking to your doctor. You don’t want to sleep while on the steering wheel on your postal route.