A longtime UPS driver has died four days after collapsing while delivering packages in sweltering Texas heat, according to the company and its union.
Chris Begley, father of two, has been with the company for nearly 30 years. He was working in 100-degree heat in Farmersville last week when he told UPS managers he didn’t feel well, as did the company and the union. According to reports.
Local truck drivers union 767 told WFAA that the dedicated 57-year-old worker collapsed inside a business while making a delivery.
Crews immediately went to check on Begley to make sure he had water and was resting in a “cool environment,” a UPS spokesperson told The Washington Post.
The company also said staff offered Begley medical care, which he declined “repeatedly,” the spokesperson said.
“He told us he recovered and asked to be taken home,” a UPS spokesman said, adding that he was rested for the rest of the day.
He was also given a few days off, and the company said they were notified on Sunday that he was hospitalized and that he had died on Monday.
“We are saddened by the passing of driver Christopher Begley and extend our deepest condolences to his family and friends,” UPS said in a statement.
“We are working with authorities as we continue to investigate the cause of death. We train our staff to recognize the symptoms of heat stress and respond immediately to any request for help.”
Dave Reeves, president of Union 767, told WFAA that Begley, a married father of two, started at UPS in 1995 and plans to retire in the near future.
He believes Begley’s death was heat-related, but the cause has not been confirmed. He was also disturbed that Begley was not taken to the hospital but was taken home.
“UPS needs to conduct a thorough investigation in order to provide his family with some answers about what happened on his last day at the company,” Reeves told the news station.
The Collin County Medical Examiner told USA TODAY that the coroner was notified of Begley’s death but did not perform an autopsy. His family may decide whether to perform an autopsy, the newspaper reported.
UPS trucks are currently not air-conditioned, but are expected to be equipped with air-conditioning units by early 2024.