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​The Emmet County Road Commission may provide property owners compensation for mailbox damage only if the damage was caused by the box or post being physically struck by Emmet County Road Commission equipment.  Mailbox damage often occurs from snow or debris thrown or pushed by the passing plow, in that case, reimbursement will not be made.  In some cases, this can be prevented, scroll down for tips on mailbox maintenance.

If you believe your mailbox was damaged by ECRC road equipment it's always best to report it as soon as possible by calling our main office and speaking with the receptionist. You will need to provide the following information, your address, phone number and approximate date/time the damage occurred and complete a mailbox reimbursement request form. Once submitted, a foreman will investigate the damage and determine whether or not the damage was caused by road equipment.


Please see policy no. 2022-003 for additional information.


While most might think it’s a destructive snow plow that knocks down mailboxes  — it’s typically not. The force of the snow thrown from the roadway is the culprit in most cases where there are loose or unstable mailboxes.


To prepare for the winter, the Emmet County Road Commission and the County Road Association of Michigan recommend property owners or caretakers give their mailbox a good hefty shake.  If it moves when shaken, the mailbox or post may not withstand standard snow removal operations.  Taking the time now to tighten screws and secure mail receptacles can help prevent potential future damage.


Standard mailboxes are allowed in the road right-of-way without a written permit. Below are some regulations to keep in mind.

  • Each box should have its own post (except for plastic newspaper boxes)

  • Post should not exceed 4"x 4" for wood, or 3 lbs./ft. for steel

  • Bury your post no more than 24″ deep

  • Supports should yield or collapse if struck. They should bend or fall away from a vehicle so as not to pose a deadly threat to drivers

  • Supports cannot be fitted with an anchor plate (metal post), embedded over 24 inches into the ground, nor set in concrete

  • Mailboxes must be constructed of sheet metal, plastic or similar weight materials, weight should not exceed 11 pounds.

  • A mailbox and its support will be considered hazardous to motorists when the support exceeds the described structural limitations. This could create a liability to the property owner.

  • Any mailbox and its support considered to be a hazard should be removed from the road right-of-way and replaced

For additional information on curbside mailbox size & construction standards refer to the United States Postal Service mailbox webpage.

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