The U.S. Postal Service has almost 80,000 rural delivery routes serviced by some 133,000 rural letter carriers. For some of those routes, USPS provides the vehicle; for others, the carrier uses a private vehicle and receives a maintenance allowance from the Postal Service for wear and tear. In fiscal year (FY) 2020, the Postal Service paid out nearly $583 million in maintenance allowances — a rise of $71 million, or 13 percent, over FY 2015.

Not long ago, the Postal Service started converting some private-vehicle rural routes to USPS-vehicle routes, estimating the change would save $888 million over six years. For a recent audit, we reviewed a sample of these completed conversions nationwide as well as future conversions, and found that the Postal Service’s strategy for these changes was generally effective. We also discovered a few shortcomings.

For instance, maximum savings weren’t realized because USPS wasn’t implementing conversions in a timely manner, and we determined that some of the future conversions wouldn’t be the most cost-effective. We made a couple recommendations to improve the process, and Postal Service management agreed with both.

Are you a rural letter carrier, or do you know one? How does a USPS-vehicle route compare with the private-vehicle route? Does one seem more cost-effective from your point of view?

Comments (188)

IMPORTANT – PLEASE NOTE: Complaints about the Postal Service – including lost, stolen, or mishandled mail – that are unrelated to the content on this page will not be posted. Please visit the Contact Us page for information on where to file formal complaints with our agency or the Postal Service.

Leave a comment

CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
  • anon

    Some regular rural carriers may actually like having a POV, most of the RCA's I worked with did not. Expecting RCA's to provide a vehicle when they may only work a day or 2 a week defeats the purpose of working. You cannot get ahead. Your vehicle will be in the shop so often and the rising gas prices speaks for itself. And alot of them literally drive junks. You would think the USPS would like to represent themselves better. Not to mention how unsafe it is!! I know management tells us to sit on the passengers side or on the console. How unsafe is that?? What happens if the airbag is deployed? They don't care about the carriers safety at all or this wouldn't be a thing. It's unbelievable actually. Amazon provides nice vehicles for their employees. RCA"S deliver Amazon and cannot even fit half of them in their POV. And as some other people have said, it is hard on your body also. I am NOT surprised the turnover rate of RCA's is so high. I'm surprised it's not higher.

    Jun 08, 2022
  • anon

    I’m a rural carrier and I drive my pov to deliver. I am truly struggling to make it gas is so high especially since my first mail box is 18 minutes away from my office. I really need a postal vehicle or a raise in ema which 3 pennies is not enough

    Jun 08, 2022
  • anon

    The new Metris van is a piece of junk. I have never seen a vehicle get stuck in the snow so easy. It acts like the front brakes are always engaged which causes the back to fishtail easily. Even with a small amount of snow driving off the edge of the blacktop to get to a mailbox can cause the vehicle to sway into the box when trying to leave. Then you can't get from the front of the vehicle to the back without getting out of the vehicle. This can be dangerous when in an area known for dogs. Would have been much smarter to have a path to the back so a package could be retrieved without leaving the vehicle, other delivery drivers have this. And the Metris causes shoulder pain compared to using my own vehicle. There is no way to position everything properly. And now USPS will not allow me to use my own vehicle even though the Metris causes shoulder pain and injury. Whoever thought these were a good idea did not do much research. And these vehicles are forever broken down and requiring maintenance. I do not believe that this is a cost savings for the post office considering the purchase and maintenance, but suppose someone who made the decision has to make it look like it was a good deal.

    May 10, 2022
  • anon

    You couldn’t pay me enough to use my own vehicle on my rural route. I actually turned down the position in a neighboring office before being hired almost 10 yrs ago in my current office. I get that some people won’t give up their personal vehicle because they’re making a fortune in EMA (not so much lately) or added safety/convenience. Unfortunately for Amazon offices, sometimes not even a LLV is enough to fit everything. One thing is certain, usps will never save more money by keeping 20+ yr old vehicles with 200k or more miles running..

    May 09, 2022
  • anon

    As a rca it would be better for my wallet and my stress level if given a rhd postal vehicle. I would make less money but at least my body wouldn't go through the constant abuse of having to straddle my center console. Rhd is more comfortable for delivering mail period. And im much quicker on routes with a postal rhd vehicle

    May 09, 2022
  • anon

    This may not be totally relevant, but it relates to cost savings. I am a regular with a 25 mile a day route and drive an LLV. I did an experiment this week in "hypermiling"...basically, go easy on the accelerator and coast when possible. These things coast really well. I improved my gas mileage by 50 percent! So in a year, at $4 a gallon, I can save the post office around $1,000. Multiply that by 80,000 routes and we could save 80 million bucks. Not to mention 50 percent less carbon emissions. Which since we're apparently getting new gas hogs soon, is a pretty big deal.

    May 06, 2022
  • anon

    usps needs to start providing the vehicles. You expect people to work 6 or 7 days a week plus maintain and pay for their vehicles with ema not covering the costs and if so by a very thin margin. Also should try smaller vehicles for smaller offices. This move would help keep people from quitting. The provide your own car thing is absolutely insane. It costs more to work for the postal service than it’s worth pay 10k for a car and then 12k for fuel and only make 30 or less in a lot of cases

    May 05, 2022
  • anon

    Service continues to deteriorate for rural delivery as postage increases for "stamps", local post offices, close their "window" prior to scheduled time, frequent delivery to wrong address, no postmark date as businesses pre-sort and obtain permits, etc., etc. From my point of view the cost continues to shift toward the ordinary citizen living in rural areas. Perhaps more time be devoted on process improvement prior to conducting audits and "pretty reports" would identify deficiencies prior to failures. Blogs such as this reveal significant factors to be addressed.prior to implementing changes. The rural carriers's comments clearly demonstrate that "one size does not fit all" and issues that need to be addressed. Patterns & trends are evident such as increased burden with delivering packages for the Amazons of this world.

    May 03, 2022
  • anon

    I need to upgrade my RHD. I dont want to purchase something and then be given a USPS vehicle. How do you find out if your route will get a USPS owned vehicle?

    Apr 23, 2022
  • anon

    I am a regular carrier (RCA) but my 8.8 hr, 5 day a week route does not have a postal vehicle. The volume of packages are too large to carry in my GMC Envoy. I'm having to load packages and tubs of mail on top of my roof rack which is unsafe but I have no choice if I want to make the delivery in one trip and on time. Once the mail is on the roof rack, now I have to worry about protecting it from the weather and possible theft. It is very stressful situation and one that we should not be in while working for the largest employer in the USA. If I do not use the roof rack then I will be making 3-6 21 mile trips back to the office for another pickup. The little Mercedes vans are no better because they do not hold anymore then my GMC. We are a package driven company thus we need to start acting like one and not rely on smaller vehicles to deliver the large capacity of packages. And not rely on employees to furnish their own vehicle to deliver mail. Some people do not have the money to afford a decent size vehicle and if we get a used one then we run into is it reliable to handle the day to day grind of the USPS work. This policy is unjust and unfair and its another reason why people quit thus you lose thousands of dollars training these people just to have them quit. Its time to rethink your strategy and spend the money now because in the long run it will pay off. Reuse and rotate the LLVs to other areas once the new vehicles come in. But what I hear is that the LLVs are going to the bone yard. Not a good idea.

    Apr 19, 2022
  • anon

    I have been delivering in a Metris for a year on a 26 mile, paved, 42k route. The front right tire wears smooth on the outside of the tire within 2,000 miles. I never had this happen on my pov. I believe experimentation on a different camber should be done! The headlight bulbs last for around 3,000 miles. I believe aftermarket LED bulbs should be tried (something that can handle the constant heat build up found in a delivery vehicle.) The brake pads wear out in about 3,000 miles. When I used lifetime pads on my pov, I could get 20,000 on a set (the trade off is faster rotor wear) The mailtray is too far from the drivers seat. All in all I like delivering in the Metris but I'm glad I don't have to pay for the maintenance! The turning radius is awesome, but rear wheel drive makes no sense in an area that receives regular snowfall.

    Apr 03, 2022
  • anon

    As a rural carrier associate assigned to POV routes, having to make sure my personal vehicle stays on the road with very little downtime is extremely stressful. The initial cost of a RHD vehicle is very prohibitive in retaining RCAs and the EMA is just barely adequate to pay for rising fuel costs and short notice maintenance. Constant stopping and starting is very rough on vehicle transmissions and fuel economy. Converting rural routes to postal vehicles would most certainly improve staffing and morale issues and allow both regular carriers and their substitutes to perform their job safer and more efficiently. Human beings perform their job much better when workplace stresses are reduced or eliminated.

    Mar 25, 2022
  • anon

    Rural USPS vehicle route is the only way to go. For USPS savings , the vehicle has to be equipped to handle rural roads, the metris is fine on routes with all pavement. Rural routes with gravel, mud, sand, snow, etc. need 4x4 capability and good ground clearance. You are mapping these routes and have satellite images of the roads, use this information in deployment. Employee retention and morale will definitely be boosted by 100% conversion to USPS vehicle fleet. The only caveat is, please take your employee into consideration and give us something to actually help us get the job done for the American people. Rural carriers have been doing more with less for far too long. Thank you.

    Mar 23, 2022
  • anon

    I am a regular going on almost 5 years. The vehicle is the most stressful part about this job. My route, along with many other rural routes everywhere, have huge pot holes, the highway is broken up on the shoulders, which is where I’m at delivering to boxes! I can’t afford to buy a brand new vehicle just to tear up out there. Along with the commercial insurance we have to have on delivery vehicle, and everything else. I’ve got 2 vehicles that I have put a new motor and transmission in both, and now both need the computer. My delivery vehicle is my daily driver also, just whichever is running is the one I’ll drive. I’ve asked my postmaster to request for me a van on my route. I’m not sure if he did or not. But I welcome a van to 71670. I just currently went from a H route to a J route, I know I would feel a huge burden off of me, just knowing if something happens to my vehicle, I don’t have to worry about how I’m going to get another one to finish route in, that rarely ever is the case. Never have more than one of my vehicles going at the same time lol. Maybe one day, I will be able to get a brand new truck to use strictly for delivery, but at the moment I’m just not able to do that, financially. I don’t have a Rca on route because ppl can’t afford to have something with low miles in order to be dependable, the car payment that goes with that, and the insurance which is ridiculous, gas prices are sky high, and then wear and tear just by sometimes delivering the mail on these horrible roads, you can’t drive slow where you won’t feel the holes, i have gravel roads filled with the rub boards the whole way down em, and then we gotta come back up them. I love my career, but it gets overwhelming quite often with these issues. With me anyway:/.

    Mar 22, 2022
  • anon

    Most carriers are all for USPS provided vehicles, provided they are the equivalent of what they are replacing. The vast majority of our carriers run 4x4 vehicles and in winter months (October to late April in many cases) these vehicles are equipped with 4 studded snow tires. Putting a rear wheel drive vehicle on many of these routes is impractical as well as very dangerous. Rural is the operative word here, unpaved roads often just mud for a month or two, ice covered in the winter and steeply crowned. Remember, we drive along the shoulder most of the time. Perhaps we as rural carriers need input on these decisions. We have been providing vehicles to service the routes since 1903. Do any of the people on the committee have this depth of experience? I am more than willing to provide guidance on the issue, I came out of the auto industry world and have delivered rural mail for 29 years.

    Mar 21, 2022
  • anon

    I am a Rural Carrier Associate. The USPS vehicle route is a shorter route compared to the personal vehicle routes in the area where I am residing. When a new fleet of vehicles are provided for each location, the LLV’s should be used for the rural routes versus personal vehicle.

    Mar 15, 2022
  • anon

    I run my POV on my route. It is very profitable for me to do so. I do not mind. My small post office only has a handful of routes and we like how things are.

    Apr 13, 2022
  • anon

    Carriers that think using a POV is profitable, must have the longest mileage routes, use the same vehicle for their personal use, and not get alot of Amazon. Maybe they are not good accountants either.

    Jun 09, 2022
  • anon

    Designed and manufactured USPS vehicles are now a must for routes to be successful. RHD Jeeps are totally inadequate for the task at hand. Inefficient, to expensive and way too small. Three trips a day to deliver a route in a Jeep. there is no other RHD alternative to purchase. RHD conversions are unsafe and destructive. While you can find an installer my local shops refuse to install conversions due to safety liability, and they have a very good point. With the weight and volume of packages being crushed in a private vehicle, crash is a danger. What would USPS liability be for a dead carrier?? With Staff shortages the demand to work 6 days a week leaves no time for vehicle maintenance and repair, they don't fix themselves! New hires leave due to the destruction of their own vehicles running rural routes. last 3 RCA left after their cars/van had two broken struts and a cracked oil pan. The Maintenance Allowance does not cover operating and owning your private vehicle which also is useless to you for personal use once you commit to delivering mail. I would never recommend a rural RCA position to anyone. The NGDV visually looks totally inadequate for many rural routes. it's too low to the ground, won't handle dirt, grave or snowy and icy rural roads with steap un plowed driveways.

    Mar 03, 2022
  • anon

    metris rear wheel drive vans were and are not the answer... Front wheel drive vans like Chrysler just stopped manufacturing would be a better answer... And--no one design fits all.... with doors on both sides and rear there is no need for walking into a van and wasted space... Carriers know what they are doing... Just give them a right hand van and they will figure out what is best for their routes... and how to set up their individual vehicle... Why is rural delivery less expensive that city?...Rurals have initiative and incentive to work smart...

    Mar 09, 2022
  • anon

    I've been employed by the USPS for 15 years. I totally agree with the postal providing RHD vehicles. I'm not understanding the process of how the route is selected to be assigned Mercedes Metris RHD vans. My office has 2 routes mines which is a K and an Aux. The Mercedes Metris RHD van was assigned to the Aux route, which is only 2 hours and low volume of mail and pkgs. The carrier(s) can literally carry All mail with pkg in their arms to load a spacious van. Subs complain having to travel up to 20 miles to work this route that has no EMA, only to be reimbursed their gas for coming to work. The decision to assign the Mercedes Metris RHD van to the Aux does not benefit the data in their findings, which is needed to make an accurate decision. I'm trying to hold on to my job, but it is wearing on me with All the maintenance for 2 vehicles... HELP!!!

    Mar 01, 2022
  • anon

    Providing vehicles v. POV... Is a must, especially if the postal service is trying to increase employment. Everyone do not have the money to buy and or maintenance a vehicle(s). Coming to work stress FREE v. being concern of a POV breaking down is a PLUS... The CARRIER will be able to offer the customer services that is expected, with a smile, which will include increase of health, increase of better relationship with management and co-workers, and also with FAMILY!! Providing the Mercedes Metris RHD or whatever RHD is decided upon, NEED to be implemented ASAP!!! Having a Stress Free work environment is not just a individual movement, but it's a "FORCE" BEING TOGETHER.... USPS may also need to look into supplying uniforms for rural carriers, it's a more professional look and it will also exemplify carriers as an USPS employee. FYI... Carriers will act according to how they feel...

    Mar 01, 2022
  • anon

    Don't reinvent the wheel! A 4 wheel drive right hand steering jeeps already available for 42,000. For private buyer. Surely USPS could negotiate a better deal for volume as well as manufacturers warranty on these. Saving approx. 20,000 per vehicle vs. Mercedes.

    Feb 28, 2022
  • anon

    So true! Why not use what works! I’ve said every since we were metris trained it is stupid putting these on rural routes. For the price, buy a fleet of RHD jeeps or purchase the carriers jeeps from them, if they want to do away with paying ema.

    Mar 07, 2022
  • anon

    I've drove a metris route and loved it. That being said I wouldn't want one on my current route. They are rear wheel drive and are not equipped to go down some of the roads on very rural areas. They are made for pavement and most are a mixture of both. If it was front wheel drive I'd say give me one bc the cost of keeping one up can be very expensive.

    Feb 27, 2022
  • anon

    As a carrier, I agree with what folks are saying about retention issues and vehicles with new hires but it also needs to be noted that if we are given vehicles to drive by the usps, they need to be actually able to traverse the routes. I deliver in high sand and mud areas and the vans get stuck, a lot. A vehicle that is capable of something for other than on street driving is the only way we could ever convert to use in our areas. Great idea in theory but also the 100+ mile a day routes would make the usps shy away from putting their vehicles on the routes with the cost of maintenance and gas.

    Feb 25, 2022
  • anon

    USPS reimbursement for wear and tear does not come close to covering the use of a 4x4 vehicle necessary to service rural routes in Vermont. The abuse the vehicle endures causes even the best vehicles to last 1-3 years. The only right-hand drive vehicle available in the US is a 4 door Jeep Wrangler which does not hold the volume of packages caused by the Amazon contract. Carries are forced to make multiple trips to get all the packages delivered. Having the "right" vehicle from USPS would be a big improvement.

    Feb 24, 2022
  • anon

    I have A rural route and I’ve ran it in my POV For 10 years and I’ve seen new hires come and go and each one of them that leaves is they can’t afford the upkeep on their POV. I think If these rural routes had a company vehicle retention would be a lot better. I would Even try one as well. With gas prices soaring this would definitely be a money saver if everyone in our office had the vans.

    Feb 23, 2022
  • anon

    I am a USPS rural carrier and i believe the post office would be more efficient and reliable if they provided all carriers with Vehicles.We would have less trouble staffing routes and retaining employees since carriers would not be required to provide a vehicle.

    Feb 17, 2022
  • anon

    In my opinion I would much rather have a vehicle provided to deliver the route. After years of using my own vehicle and being in offices where carriers have to provide their own it puts an added layer of stress to the job that is not quite worth the compensation in my opinion.

    Feb 17, 2022
  • anon

    I personally can’t imagine doing my 73 mile rural route without my AWD POV and the ability to choose my own winter tires. I get a lot of ice and snow on my gravel roads and some of them are shaded with trees on both sides and usually don’t thaw out until March. I’m more than happy with the EMA arrangement we have currently. I don’t think that the post office will save money deploying government vehicles to these remote routes, especially the Metris vans, because from what I understand the maintenance isn’t done in house so they will have to go back to Mercedes Benz every time they have an issue. These vans weren’t designed with remote rural roads in mind and I think it would be a mistake to keep deploying these. The safest vehicle for long rural routes are AWD or 4x4 SUVs with snow tires.

    Feb 16, 2022
  • anon

    I have been a rural carrier for 15 years. I drove an LLV for two years on my previous route and the LLV was so much more efficient. I also had chains in the winter and was always able to deliver all my mail and packages. Also a big plus with the LLV is that if you break down or have to wait on service, you build O day time. I am currently on a POV route. For years I drove two old jeep cherokees and was always stressed--not knowing when I would break down-- not knowing if I would be able to finish the route --always having to call tow trucks (or my husband if he was home), and then not being able to find parts to fix them. Paid out way more than what I earned in EMA and I always felt penalized when I was broke down because I couldn't subtract that time--ended up with 9 and 10 hour days! I finally had to buy a new jeep wrangler and although I do not have the stress of breaking down, I do have the financial stress of payments and general maintenance.

    Feb 16, 2022
  • anon

    I have two cars currently in the shop. One because it's hard to find the proper part, the other is going to cost quite a bit of $$ due to lack of used parts (nothing new at all). By the end of this month, I'd be spending ~$7600 keeping these things running just to have my job. That's a little under 1/2 my entire yearly EMA, and if I include gas I'll have ~$3500 the rest of the entire YEAR (and it's only February) for tires, brakes, suspension, etc. @ ~80 miles a day, there's a pretty good chance I won't be keeping a POV route because it'll be impossible to keep a vehicle running within the EMA allowance. Also, I did have a Metris on an Aux route last year. Completely useless in any non-perfect road conditions. No traction, no weight, a turbo that spins out all grave/dirt mailbox areas.

    Feb 15, 2022
  • anon

    I have been a Rural Carrier for 27 years. 15 years I drove my POV (Personally Owned Vehicle) and 20 of those years were as a As Needed Driver Safety Instructor. In my area management did a horrible job deploying over 300 Mercedes Metris RHD vans. Headquarters chose and created a list of Rural Routes for these vehicles to be assigned. Drivers Training created a spreadsheet of the chosen routes, pulled training records of all assigned carries and Operations instructed us NOT to deviate from the list. As we trained the Regular Rural Carrier assigned the Metris, the VMF was notified to deploy the vehicles to the assigned Rural Route. Managers/Postmasters were given the chance for at least two RCA'S that knew these routes to be trained to help with scheduling issues. Our VMF got behind on deploying vehicles after about 4-5 weeks. RHD Mercedes Metris vans began to pile up in the Processing Facility parking lot. Soon Drivers Training started to receive phone calls from Post Offices on our deployment list and not on our list. The VMF took it upon themselves to deploy vehicles. Now Post Offices in this area do not have the correct number of vehicles. Some Rural Routes who were supposed to get vehicles have not received them and vice-versa. Post Masters and Managers have also not assigned some of these vehicles to any routes and are using them as spares for Rural and City Routes. So EMA is still being paid out, some offices who were anticipating getting vehicles don't have them. No one seems to care. So, in reading the article I do not agree the Postal Service's strategy to permanently assign GOVs to EMA routes was generally effective for this district. The Metris is a fair weather vehicle and with more RHD vehicles assigned to Rural Routes it most definitely will help with RCA's retention rates.

    Feb 15, 2022
  • anon

    I have been a Rural Carrier for 27 years. 15 years I drove my POV (Personally Owned Vehicle) and 20 of those years were as a As Needed Driver Safety Instructor. In my area management did a horrible job deploying over 300 Mercedes Metris RHD vans. Headquarters chose and created a list of Rural Routes for these vehicles to be assigned. Drivers Training created a spreadsheet of the chosen routes, pulled training records of all assigned carries and Operations instructed us NOT to deviate from the list. As we trained the Regular Rural Carrier assigned the Metris, the VMF was notified to deploy the vehicles to the assigned Rural Route. Managers/Postmasters were given the chance for at least two RCA'S that knew these routes to be trained to help with scheduling issues. Our VMF got behind on deploying vehicles after about 4-5 weeks. RHD Mercedes Metris vans began to pile up in the Processing Facility parking lot. Soon Drivers Training started to receive phone calls from Post Offices on our deployment list and not on our list. The VMF took it upon themselves to deploy vehicles. Now Post Offices in this area do not have the correct number of vehicles. Some Rural Routes who were supposed to get vehicles have not received them and vice-versa. Post Masters and Managers have also not assigned some of these vehicles to any routes and are using them as spares for Rural and City Routes. So EMA is still being paid out, some offices who were anticipating getting vehicles don't have them. No one seems to care. So, in reading the article I do not agree the Postal Service's strategy to permanently assign GOVs to EMA routes was generally effective for this district. The Metris is a fair weather vehicle and with more RHD vehicles assigned to Rural Routes it most definitely will help with RCA's retention rates.

    Feb 15, 2022
  • anon

    Worked as a youth on RFD's. Father was a postmaster. Cost effectiveness for USPS vehicles has generally been seen since the 60's when I helped with the routes. However in some terrains it can be less effective. depends on the circumstances.

    Feb 15, 2022
  • anon

    Government vehicle would be best one caveat they need to be AWD. I just had snow on treacherous roads for a month in the mountains. You can get most of your packages in a LLV or Van. You also have room for three trays in a Gov vehicle. No worries for the carrier on maintenance. I had engine and a transmission replaced in same year. A lot of undo stress. And lastly no more sitting in the middle or having to put in a conversion kit. I still have back pain from sitting in middle. Who can afford 2400 on a conversion. That eats up your EMA in a hurry when your an RCA.

    Feb 15, 2022
  • anon

    I am a rural carrier in Florida. Route2 has a Metris van assigned to the route. Most of the route goes well, but there are some sugar sand roads where the Metris can get stuck. I drove it on my route (RT 1) once, and the only way to deliver it is at places where you know you will get stuck, you jump out, walk to the mailboxes and deliver. The Metris is not the answer for a truly rural route. We need AWD with good all terrain tires. I have a couple of old Jeep Cherokees that are factory RHD. It is difficult and expensive keeping them maintained, not to mention stressful. And you have to pay for your gas too. RCA's have a horrible time delivering from the middle, and having a vehicle that can get through dirt roads, mudholes etc. I have no RCA again because she can't provide a vehicle. I really love this job, but worrying about a vehicle is quite simply the most stressful part of this job. Bottom line is that the vehicle needs to conform to the requirements of the route. USPS tends to ignore that when acquiring vehicles for the rural side.

    Feb 14, 2022
  • anon

    LLV’s are a must to keep new carriers. The new generation of young rural carriers have zero concept on using their own vehicles. New hires say no way and walk right out the door in a week. Plus, POVs are too small for todays parcel volume. Also, vehicles we used that had shifters in the steering column no longer really exist anymore. So yes, we need to go 100% postal provided vehicles for routes to help retention!

    Feb 13, 2022
  • anon

    I have been a rural carrier for 27 years, and have seen what the city carriers use. I can not imagine delivering mail on rural roads in freezing rain and severe snowstorms in an LLV without chains, or van that doesn't at minimum have studded snow tires. When I first started, the LLVs had chains on them in the winter. Not now. In my office these vehicles are always having issues, from catching on fire to transmissions. Simply put, they are crap. The EMA is totally inadequate, but that is a seperate issue. The only way I would want a Gov vehicle if it was something four wheel drive outfitted in the winter with studded snow tires, such as a Honda Pilot or CRV

    Feb 13, 2022
  • anon

    It is impossible to purchase a personal vehicle that can be driven from the passenger side UNLESS you can afford $30-50,000 for a RHD Jeep. It is UNREALISTIC to expect a new hire to put out that kind of money. Government vehicles are the only way to go. The carrier is behind the wheel, belted in not stretched across the front seat with their left foot pushing the gas and brake pedal. Government vehicles can have better signage and strobing lights to alert other drivers.

    Feb 13, 2022
  • anon

    The postal service should do a better job of evaluating where they could receive the most benefit of placing a USPS vehicle versus a PV vehicle. Instead, they have just issued blanket statements of over 108 miles or under such such miles. Some rural routes are much tougher on a vehicle than others. I was assigned a Metris spring of 2021. First set of brakes went out at 5k miles. Next set of brakes & first set of tires wore out at 13k miles. I'm currently at 23k+ miles and brakes are starting to squeal plus a tire is wearing bad on 1 side. I estimate maybe another 2k to 3k miles before both will have to be replaced again. Then when it's time to service the Metris they have to tow it 2 hrs to the nearest facility. This also doesn't include wait time charged to the USPS on defrosting & tire problems on the route. The Metris will not go in inclement weather and it is a safery hazard during those times. The Metris is easy to deliver out of though. It is comfortable but the mail tray should be raised a couple inches. I can definitely see the benefits of placement on a lot of certain routes but I'm not sure they are going to hold up long term on rugged routes.

    Feb 13, 2022
  • anon

    I'm a rural carrier serving a route with 114 miles, over 30 of those miles are gravel. I use my own vehicle and after hearing LLV and Metris horror stories, I'd like it to stay that way. I know my POV is safe and properly maintained. I can't trust a postal vehicle would be.

    Feb 13, 2022
  • anon

    A GOV would be a huge improvement, however AWD or 4 wheel drive is an absolute necessity in a lot of areas. If you are just going to pass down the wore out old LLV's then done bother. Also, adequate cargo space is a must. For safety and visibility, windows, blind spots around the LLV are terrible.

    Feb 12, 2022
  • anon

    What is cost effective? In order to purchase a commercial warranty on a vehicle, it needs to be new. And you will need a warranty. Over $40,000 out of pocket to do a job that pays just a little over that. And why the metris? Why not ford's van in England? Or royal mails van? Or Honda or Toyota vans from Japan? Or Nissan truck from Australia? Why can't we use already in production RHD diesel vehicles that get 30-40mpg? UPS and FEDEX have no issue using these vans. From my records. Using a POV cost me $2,700 a year out of pocket on a new vehicle. I can't imagine what it costs usps to run the metris let alone an llv.

    Feb 12, 2022
  • anon

    Hello, I am a regular rural carrier and have been for almost 20 years. I have been driving a private owned vehicle for about 21 years and have been through several vehicles because of the wear and tear. I had the experience of driving a postal vehicle for about 2 years. Loved the idea of driving until the cut in pay took effect because of the EMA and because I had no choice to choose high option because of I was shy of the 10-year mark. While driving a private owned vehicle my credit cards have took a big jump because of so many repairs in order to get the mail delivered. I would prefer to drive a postal owned vehicle because I would not have to worry about the repairs, and it is much safer because most of have to straddle to deliver and less painful. I feel that more rcas would stay to do the job if they didn't have to worry about supplying their own vehicles for wear and tear. There are however some carriers that cannot afford to take that $10000 or more pay cut after having got in debt to do the repairs. I recently just bought a van and had the conversion kit put in it and because of amazon that is not even big enough for my route. If I didn't get the package help, there would be several days I would have to make a second trip.

    Feb 12, 2022
  • anon

    Seems real fair even if your on a pov route you still get an LLv and keep the pay from your routes evaluation from 2018 for your route so cost effective lol your paying for an pov on a route that was counted as having a pov but letting them use an llv lol letter count was .0232 dps llv .0333 with pov

    Feb 11, 2022
  • anon

    It’s hard to justify any savings at all when we are spending more in gas to drive all the increased Amazon packages to the door. We should be delivering their smaller packages to the mailboxes that we already deliver the mail to. I see Amazon pulling up to the same house I am at, at the same time and they have a small little spur and I’m dragging a mini fridge out of my truck! Makes NO sense especially when supreme gas is almost $4 a gallon!

    Feb 10, 2022
  • anon

    I have done both types of routes. The biggest issue with the POV is the lack of appropriate and affordable vehicles. I am on a very rural route with harsh winters and need a 4wd or AWD. Using a RHD converted Jeep grand Cherokee now but with the increase in amazon (4 years since last mail count) it is no longer large enough to handle the package volume without multiple trips which involve a minimum of 15 minutes drive time to go back to the office. Providing an AWD van or minivan with RHD would be great for my route. There would still be some days where weather prohibits delivery but not that many. The biggest reason to provide government vehicles in to aid in hiring and retention of new employees. Not many people can afford to buy a vehicle large enough and capable of delivering out the right hand side on $19/hour for 1-2 days a week. The EMA reimbursement only covers costs if you have almost no breakdowns or can do some of your own maintenance. Plus it is paid after the fact so it take quite some time to save enough for a more appropriate vehicle. The solution is simple, more GOV routes will equal more new hires and higher RCA retention. Provided the USPS actually gets vehicles that work in all climates. They may need some 4WD, some AWD and some can still be 2wd or front wheel drive. Common sense should be a guide here.

    Feb 10, 2022
  • anon

    Rural Carrier is on the hook for vehicle insurance say 1000k to 2000k as a route vehicle & repairs tires 500 & general repairs. & maintenance brakes oil 1000k. I'd say a no brainer to allow carrier to handle all that. If a carrier receives 9000k in ema, I would guess its prolly close to a wash when factoring in above stated expenses. If the carrier has to replace their vehicle or has to pay for major repair transmission or engine then carrier exceeds the 9000k estimated ema in a given year. Fuel is approximately 4$ a gallon current times. id say 6000k for a 50mile a day route serviced days a week.

    Feb 10, 2022

Pages

Share this post


Recent Comments

Monthly Archive