ROYAL Mail has announced measures to keep its vital service running while keeping staff and customers safe.

From now on staff will not be handing over devices to customers to sign for items but will simply log the name of the person accepting the item.

If items will not fit through a letter box, Royal Mail workers will put the items outside the door, knock the door, then move to a safe distance.

If no one answers they will take the items away again.

Shane O’Riordain, Royal Mail Managing Director of Regulation and Corporate Affairs said: “We understand the important role we have to play in helping people to stay connected. We are working hard to deliver mail to every part of the UK.

"Mail is still scheduled to be collected and delivered as normal. This is a fast-moving situation and local service levels may at times be impacted by local absences.

“Royal Mail takes the health and safety of its colleagues, its customers and the local communities in which we operate very seriously."

There will only be one person in a delivery van at a time and workers are encouraged to wash their hands regularly.