KEARNY - Postal workers in Kearny are mourning the loss of one of their colleagues, who died going to work during Hurricane Irene.
Kane in Your Corner has learned that Ronald Dawkins drowned in 12 feet of water outside the Priority Mail processing facility in Kearny on Sunday morning. When his car began to fill with water, Dawkins tried to walk the rest of the way to work. He tripped and fell into a drainage ditch. A coworker saw what happened and tried to dive in after him, but it was too late.
Some of Dawkins' co-workers say they're angry at the Postal Service for asking employees to work during the worst of the hurricane, when New Jersey was under a State of Emergency. They say the building should have been closed.
A spokeswoman for the Postal Service says it isn't that simple. She said the facility was a safe haven for truck drivers who were already on the road. She says workers were instructed to be safe and do the right things for them personally. However, she says many employees make a tremendous effort to get to work every day since they understand the 24/7 demand for postal deliveries.