USPS Worker Nearing Retirement Found Dead in Mail Truck During California Heat Wave

Peggy Frank had worked for the USPS for 28 years.

Peggy Frank, 63, had worked for the U.S. Postal Service for 28 years and planned to retire soon.

A United States Postal Service worker has been found dead inside her mail truck during a sweltering heatwave in California.

Peggy Frank, 63, had worked for the Postal Service for 28 years and planned to retire soon. 

She had been on medical leave for several months after breaking her ankle, and returned to the job on Friday.

That same day, a neighbor found her unresponsive in her mail truck in the Woodland Hills area of Los Angeles, authorities said.

“I am really so sad because she was going to retire really soon," Lynn Calkins, Frank’s sister, told KTLA-TV. "Now she can't."

Officials are working to determine Frank’s cause of death. 

Her family said they believe the extreme heat may have been a factor.

Temperatures in the area had soared to 117 degrees, and an excessive heat warning for the region had been released by the National Weather Service. 

In addition, USPS trucks are not equipped with air conditioning, CBS Los Angeles reported.

“They [the Postal Service] need to do something," Calkins told KTLA-TV. "They need to start caring about their people a little more.”

A spokesperson for the USPS told KTLA-TV that postal workers are reminded every day to stay hydrated, wear appropriate hats and clothing, to carry water and ice and to stay in the shade as often as possible. 

"The safety of our employees is a top priority and the Postal Service has implemented a national Heat Illness Prevention Program (HIPP) for all employees,” a statement from the USPS said. “In connection with the HIPP, the Postal Service provides mandatory heat-related and other safety training and instruction to all employees and assures they have the resources needed to do their jobs safely.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the employee’s family at this time,” the statement said. 

But Frank’s family said the efforts made are not enough. 

“They need to change things a little so it happens to nobody else,” Calkins said.