WINNIPEG — A Winnipeg homeless man sleeping in a garbage bin escaped with minor injuries thanks to a quick-thinking sanitation truck driver.
The trapped man was helped out of the back of a Johnson Waste Management truck after the driver drove to the main downtown fire station for help at about 3:20 a.m. Tuesday.
Platoon Chief Bob Wright said the man woke up after being dumped into the truck and alerted the driver by yelling and beating on the walls of the truck.
Wright said the man had sore wrists and lower back pain after being removed from the back of the truck.
“He got off quite lucky,” Wright said. “It was a real shocker.”
Wright said firefighters used a ladder to get the man out of the truck.
“The driver requested assistance for us to remove a person from the truck. He was hand-delivered to us — that doesn’t happen often.”
Jeff Johnson, co-owner of Johnson Waste Management, credits his driver for ensuring the incident didn’t become tragic.
“It’s fortunate it happened at this time of year. The driver’s window was open, so he could hear the man.”
John Mohan, head of Siloam Mission, said even though there are shelters in the city, many homeless people prefer to sleep elsewhere.
Mohan said while there are about 200 emergency beds at shelters in Winnipeg, there are about 2,000 homeless in the city.