Woman trying to prevent dumpster deaths feeling voiceless after accident in Penticton | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Woman trying to prevent dumpster deaths feeling voiceless after accident in Penticton

Image Credit: SUBMITTED/wasteconnectionscanada.com

A Victoria woman who was trying to prevent anybody from suffering the same death as her nephew found out the same tragic accident happened to another man in Penticton.

Dorothy Jeffrey’s 25-year-old nephew was living on the streets of Victoria when he was found dead inside of a recycling truck on Nov. 12, 2019.

“He was just trying to keep warm,” she said.

READ MORE: Greece: Man, believed homeless, crushed in 'robot dumpster'

She remembers her nephew was ”a bit of a wild child" who unfortunately struggled with drug addiction and mental health and spent the last five years of his life homeless.

“He was fun, had a good sense of humour, he was good looking, funny. We used to spend a lot of time together when he was younger.”

Jeffrey has requested the coroner’s report but says she is still waiting.

“I’m hoping it will contain recommendations for Waste Connections (of Canada) to change some procedures,” she said.

“There are certain cities where they lock the bins. But if nothing else why can they not just have a physical inspection? Just a look inside first.”

Jeffrey is still hopeful the coroner’s report will issue recommendations to save other people from dying the same way, but she is dismayed that no efforts were made in time for the 52-year-old man who was crushed in Penticton in April.

The coroner’s report on the Penticton man's death has not yet been released either.

READ MORE: B.C. Housing minister says Penticton dumpster death adds urgency to fix housing issues

Beyond the risk to human life, she also worries about animals like raccoons and cats that might find themselves trapped in a garbage or recycling bin.

Jeffrey has tried relaying her concerns directly to Waste Connections, which won’t offer her a written response, she said.

“It has fallen on deaf ears, and now another man has died.”

Whatever the answer is – whether it's locking the bins, having the driver’s knock before emptying each one, or install some sort of kill switch within the compactor – she believes there should be a greater onus on waste removal companies to minimize the risk that compactors present, and more urgency from the provincial government to address the problem.

Calls and emails to Waste Connections were not returned.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Dan Walton or call 250-488-3065 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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