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Man sheltering in West Kelowna dumpster nearly crushed in garbage truck

The driver heard banging noises coming from the truck’s compactor
A man is likely lucky to be alive after sheltering in a dumpster and ending up in a garbage truck compactor. (Black Press file photo)

As the cold snap in the Okanagan continues, some people are seeking shelter in potentially dangerous locations.

A garbage truck driver in West Kelowna got a shock when he heard banging noises coming from the rear of his vehicle on Dec. 1.

RCMP said the driver had made a pickup around 5:40 a.m. when he heard the commotion. When he stopped and got out of the truck he could hear a man inside the compactor.

The driver realized the man had been picked up inside a dumpster at a previous location, and that the compactor had possibly been cycled at least twice before he was found.

The West Kelowna Fire Department freed the man, who suffered minor injuries to his feet and hands and was hypothermic. He was taken to hospital for assessment.

“When the weather gets colder we sometimes see this happening as people seek shelter wherever they can,” said Const. Mike Della-Paolera, media relations officer with Kelowna RCMP. “Fortunately, this outcome was favourable and he will survive his minor injuries.”

In April 2022, a 52-year-old Penticton man died two days after being discovered crushed in a recycling truck.


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Gary Barnes

About the Author: Gary Barnes

Journalist and broadcaster for three decades.
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