Rude awakening

Saturday, December 18th, 2004

Sometimes you wake up and you just know it's going to be one of those days…

From the Ann Arbor News, Michigan:
Homeless man gets compacted in garbage

Friday, December 17, 2004
BY TOM GANTERT
Ann Arbor News Staff Reporter

A homeless man miraculously escaped serious injury this morning when he was dumped into the back of a garbage truck and compacted after he fell asleep inside a commercial trash bin in downtown Ann Arbor, city firefighters said.

Lt. Scott Robertson said he wasn't sure how much of the compacting process was completed or why the man wasn't hurt: “Just being in the Dumpster and being dumped would have been a heck of a ride, let alone being compacted.”

Robertson said firefighters got on top of the garbage truck and were able to get the man out.

Bryan Weinert, program director of the city's Solid Waste department, said: “It's really quite miraculous the guy got out without serious injury.”

He said waste trucks each have a large, dull steel blade that pushes the garbage against the inside wall to maximize space. He said how tightly it is compacted depends on how hard the driver pushes the compacting button and the amount and type of trash in the dump truck.

In his 16 years with the city's Solid Waste department, he said, this is the first time he had heard of this happening.

© 2004 Ann Arbor News

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