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Rochester postal facility reopens after mercury leaked from package

A US Postal processing facility in Rochester is back open after being closed for more than a week due to the leak of mercury from a package.

Officials say the NW Rochester Processing and Distribution Center on Lyell Avenue resumed daily mail processing operations as of Thursday afternoon.

That facility temporarily stopped operations on Augusts 27 due to what officials say was an illegally mailed package containing mercury. Postal officials worked with environmental contractors and regulators to evaluate, clean and certify the safety of the facility, and those operations have been completed now.

About 350 people work in that facility. There was no word of any injuries.

During the shutdown, mail that is normally processed at that Lyell Avenue facility was processed at some other postal facilities in Rochester, Buffalo and Pittsburgh. But there was some mail in the Rochester facility that could not be moved until the cleaning and testing process was completed.

The package that leaked mercury also resulted in the temporary suspension of operations at a postal facility in the Syracuse suburb of Marcellus. According to, that facility was expected to reopen soon.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.