No rail, no mail - post office stops delivery to resident over porch steps

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A Detroit homeowner has lived at the same address for more than 50 years without any problems getting mail delivered to his house. But just recently, the letters stopped coming because the carrier refused to come on the porch.

At first Rick Maruszczak thought no mail in his door meant there was no mail to be delivered. But one day when he saw his mail carrier, he was told differently.

"(The carrier said) 'Your stairs are hazardous,' and I looked at my stairs and thought, what happened to stairs?" says Maruszczak.

That was three months ago.

Since that time, Maruszczak has been working to get answers about why after living in this home for more than 50 years, his porch steps are now considered hazardous by the United States Postal Service.

"Anything over four stairs, there is a railing that is required," he said. "But we have never received any documentation stating this."

Maruszczak says he was told he could get a post office box or make changes to his porch. But all the options cost money, including this one:

"Or else get a railing which is between $300 and $400," he says.

Maruszczak says for three months he has been going to this post office near his home to pick up his mail, but he still questions why.

"The post office has an obligation and they take an oath to deliver your mail," he said. "They can do it in rain and sleet and all bad weather, but if there's one extra stair on your porch they can't deliver."

Fox 2 reached out to USPS and was told in a statement:

"The safety of our employees is a top priority at the Postal Service. Maintaining a safe path to the mail box, including following local city ordinances regarding steps and porche, will help letter carriers maintain consistent delivery service. Only after careful consideration has the Postal Service curtailed delivery where a possible hazard could occur."

But this homeowner believes if a railing is required, the USPS should step up to the plate and help out.

"If the post office requires houses to have railings they should have a number for a company to come in and give you a deal because it is required," he says.