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2 central Minnesota post office employees fall ill from suspected mold

September 4, 2018

Mold in a central Minnesota post office sickened two employees, and operations were quickly suspended until the building can be deemed safe, the U.S. Postal Service said Tuesday.

The problem at the post office in downtown Bowlus was brought to the attention of the Postal Service’s district leadership on Friday after two employees “experienced illness, which their physicians identified as being consistent with symptoms associated with presence of mold,” said Postal Service spokeswoman Kristy Anderson.

Safety personnel for the district detected water damage on walls, the ceiling and elsewhere that led to mold forming, Anderson added.

Anderson declined to reveal the nature of the employees’ health problems or the severity. Symptoms from mold exposure included sneezing, nasal congestion, itchy eye, nose and throat, watery eyes and dry skin.

The post office in the town of about 285 residents will be closed for an undetermined length of time as repairs are made.

All services provided there have been moved in the meantime roughly 6 miles east to Royalton’s post office, Anderson said. Bowlus post office patrons can collect items in Royalton, but they will need to show photo identification.

The building on Main Street is leased to the Postal Service and is owned by Arnold Benusa, who was the Bowlus postmaster until 2012, Anderson said.

Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482

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