An inspector general audit of three Postal Service facilities in the Baltimore area found safety issues at all three and security issues at two of them, the latest in a series of such findings.
In the category of safety issues, inspectors found problems such as an restrooms with problems including inoperable urinals, a clogged sink, lack of hot water and a toilet that overflows when flushed; missing, bulging or misaligned ceiling tiles; damaged tiles “with evidence of mold” or that “were at risk of falling on employees”; improper electrical wiring; first aid items that had expired as long ago as 2007; a blocked sprinkler system, and more.
Among the security issues were an inoperable security camera, employee reports of suspicious persons at the rear of the building, and failure to lock vehicles as required in a secured parking lot.
The report blamed management for “not prioritizing issues or lack of oversight. For example, some maintenance and safety issues such as stained and missing ceiling tiles, damaged walls, dirty air vents, blocked electrical panels, and exposed electrical wires were simply not considered a priority. In addition, housekeeping inspections were not conducted semi-annually in the three facilities due to lack of management oversight.”
“These issues could jeopardize the health, safety, and well-being of Postal Service employees and customers. Further, it could create an environment that dissuades customers from doing business in these offices. If management does not address workplace hazards, the Postal Service could potentially incur fines,” it said.
It said that management took steps to resolve some of the issues after inspectors pointed them out and that it will monitor the response to others.