UPS worker collapses in sweltering heat during route, dies days later

A veteran UPS driver died in Texas Sunday, days after collapsing in sweltering heat during his route. (Source: WFAA, PHOTOS FROM FAMILY, CNN)
Published: Aug. 30, 2023 at 12:05 PM CDT
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MCKINNEY, Texas (WFAA) – A veteran UPS driver died in Texas on Sunday, days after collapsing in sweltering heat during his route.

Chris Begley, 57, had worked for UPS for nearly three decades, and his family said he was hoping to retire in the next few years.

Drivers dealing with the heat on their routes was a prime issue within negotiations on a new labor deal between union leaders and UPS earlier this year.

Per Begley’s labor union, Teamsters, the loving husband and father of two was dropping off a package last Wednesday when the highest temperature was 101 degrees and the heat index values reached 108.

Union president and principal officer Dave Reeves said Begley collapsed during the delivery.

“He did notify UPS of some symptoms that were heat-related injuries,” Reeves said.

UPS said Begley was offered to be taken to the hospital but declined and was taken home.

His truck was left behind at the delivery location, but if Begley wasn’t well enough to drive, Reeves wants to know why a supervisor didn’t take him to the hospital immediately.

“Did UPS follow their own training program they’ve developed?” Reeves questioned.

Begley was removed from service and took a few days off. He was later hospitalized and died on Sunday.

His official cause of death has not been released, but UPS explained it trains its employees to recognize the symptoms of heat stress and respond to any request for help.

There is no air conditioning in UPS trucks right now, but newer ones will have it next year and will be given to the hottest parts of the country first.