Residents reminded to follow mailbox rules

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The Flathead County Road Department reminds residents to take precautions to avoid mailbox damage from snowplows.

The face of the mailbox needs to be a minimum of 3 feet from the edge of the driving surface of the roadway, Public Works Director Dave Prunty said. This has been a county policy since 1980.

Mailboxes are considered an encroachment on the county right of way. Landowners are responsible for the maintenance and care of their individual mailboxes.

The Road Department is not responsible for any damage done to mailboxes during routine snow plowing and maintenance of county roads, Prunty noted.

Typically, if the mailbox is not securely attached to the post it will become dislodged by the force of the snow being plowed. Over time the continued force of the snow on mailboxes will loosen the mailbox from the post. Prunty urged residents to make sure their mailbox is securely attached to the post.

Private driveways and roads should not be plowed across a county road. When a private drive or roadway is plowed across a county road there are berms left in the roadway causing safety concerns for the snowplow and citizens driving on the road.

“If the berms are not cleaned up they could become hazardous to the motoring public,” Prunty said. “If a berm is left in the roadway and there is an accident, then all parties responsible for the berm would be liable. Please push the snow off the roadway as far as possible. Do not leave snow berms on the edge of traveled roadway.”

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