Woman dies after getting trapped in Toronto clothing donation bin

Woman dies after getting trapped inside Toronto clothing donation bin
Woman found dead in clothing donation bin

11 January, 2019

Bystanders heard the woman calling for help behind a building near Bloor Street and Dovercourt Road shortly before 2 a.m., police told CP24.

Emergency crews were rushed to the scene and found the woman stuck half inside the box upon their arrival.

She was pronounced dead at the scene, officials said.

This unfortunate event comes just a week after a 34-year-old man died after somehow becoming trapped inside the entrance of a clothing donation bin near the entry of Ambleside Park in Vancouver.

The District of West Vancouver sealed donation bins in that city and said it was looking at options to make them safer or remove them altogether.

He said the manufacturers of these types of bins - and there are at least nine or 10 different versions in Canada - most likely didn't account for desperate people trying to get inside of them when they were designed.

"I believe the municipal government has a duty to make sure proper rules are in place to make sure the drop boxes in our city are safe", Tory wrote in a letter to the committee chair.

"Shut them all down and get a designer and redesign these things".

Tuesday's death in Toronto played out in similar fashion, according to city police Const. Jenifferjit Sidhu.

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The Toronto woman's death isn't the first of its kind in Canada.

The City of West Vancouver has ordered all its donation bins locked, while Burnaby, B.C., is asking for all bins to be removed from within its city limits.

The hatches on the bins are created to keep thieves out, but they can also trap people climbing inside.

Agro said Rangeview is advising charities to remove those bars for the time being until safer designs can be developed and built.

Sidhu said the identity of the latest victim in Toronto has not yet been released.

Two similar incidents were reported in Vancouver previous year. "That would be painful, and it would not be quick".

In New Westminster, staff say no one has made a request to the city to look into the issue of donation bins.

A professor at the University of British Columbia has also tasked fourth-year engineering students with redesigning the clothing bins, which some advocates for the homeless describe as "death traps". They said they're investigating it as "a death by misadventure".

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