EAST MOLINE, Ill. — A 69-year-old FedEx worker has been found dead outside a delivery hub in western Illinois, and police believe the extreme cold snap that hit the country this week played a role.
The man, whose name wasn't released, is among 17 people killed in the Midwest as a result of extreme weather conditions this week.
A co-worker found the man's body between two tractor-trailers on Thursday morning outside the FedEx delivery hub in East Moline, police Capt. Darren Gault said.
It wasn't immediately clear how long the worker had been there, or why he was there. The hub had been closed on Wednesday.
It was extremely cold in the Moline area this week. At an airport only 10 miles from the hub, temperatures dipped below zero late Tuesday afternoon and never rose above that until Thursday evening. Wednesday evening's low was 29 below with a wind chill of 34 below; Thursday morning's low was 33 below.
"We are saddened by the loss of our team member and our sympathies go out to his family and friends," FedEx said in a statement Friday. "We are working with local authorities as they investigate.
"FedEx has contingency plans in place to ensure the well-being of our team members and service providers. Several of our centers, including the Rock Island center, were closed or running very limited operations this week due to the extreme cold."
Of the 17 deaths linked to this week's extreme weather, eight were in Iowa, where some were due to car wrecks in snowy conditions. Weather-related deaths were also reported in Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Indiana and Wisconsin, authorities said.