Female Mail Carrier Found Dead in USPS Truck After Delivering Mail in 117-Degree Heat
A U.S. Postal worker was found dead in her truck after delivering mail as temperatures soared to nearly 120 degrees in Southern California, according to her family.
The family of Peggy Frank, 63, of North Hills, said she was discovered while seated in a postal vehicle by a bystander, said Ed Winter of the Los Angeles County Department’s Medical Examiner-Coroner’s Office. Winter said that paramedics tried to revive her, but she was pronounced dead on Friday at 3:35 p.m. local time, the Los Angeles Daily News reported.
Winter couldn’t say whether the heat was a factor in her death. Temperatures in the area soared to 117 degrees Fahrenheit.
An autopsy for Frank is currently being done, and her cause of death has yet to be established, Winter said.
“We want to express our thoughts and prayers for the employee’s family at this difficult time,” said Evelina Ramirez, who is a spokeswoman with the U.S. Postal Service. Carriers deliver the mail in “all kinds of weather, including high temperatures,” Ramirez said.
“Safety is our top priority for all of our employees,” Ramirez added to the Daily News. “The Postal Service strives to ensure that they have the tools and training to do so safely.”
Her family said that she was just a few years away from retirement. Her son told CBS Los Angeles that her post office vehicle had no air conditioning.
“Carrying the mailbag around with no air conditioning in the car—yeah, I’m sure she’s probably gonna overheat,” Frank’s son Kirk Kessler told CBS Los Angeles.
Another family member told KTLA that it’s likely her death was related to the heat wave.
“I can not believe it because I don’t think that it should have happened,” said her sister Lynn Calkins. “I’m so sad because she was going to retire soon. Now she can’t.”
Calkins said she suffered a heat stroke last year during the summer.
Calkins added that she places part of the blame on the Postal Service. “They need to start caring about their people a little bit more,” she said.
In Hemet, California, over the weekend, an elderly couple was found dead inside their RV. Their air conditioner wasn’t turned on when they were discovered, CBS noted.
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