Why are so many people dying in Canadian clothing donation bins?

A woman found trapped in a donation box in Bloorcourt Village this morning has died police confirm

A woman found trapped in a donation box in Bloorcourt Village this morning has died police confirm

On Tuesday morning, Toronto police responded to a call about a 35-year-old woman who was found trapped, without vital signs, halfway inside a donation bin.

One area resident told CP24 that she often sees women from a nearby homeless shelter try to grab things from the donation bin.

There was another clothing bin related fatality on Tuesday in Toronto, a little over a week after a Vancouver man died after getting stuck in a West Vancouver bin.

The manager for RangeView Fabricating, Brandon Agro, says with at least eight deaths in Canada since 2015 it's time for immediate action.

"They are set up in a way to make it hard for people to have access to the inside of the box but obviously (they are) not safe enough". Many of people who volunteered to design a retrofit solution are students and they deserve to be paid, he explained. Police say she appears to have died after a medical episode, so the exact cause of death is not yet known.

Officers in Toronto, Canada, believe this was an accident and are not treating the death as suspicious, according to CBC.

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

Last November, a 32-year-old man was discovered dead inside a donation box in Cambridge, Ont., and a man in his 20s died in a similar container in Calgary in July 2017. The company has been advising charities to remove those bars until safer designs can be implemented.

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

For instance, increasing welfare cheques during the winter months to help people buy warm clothes would prevent them from reaching into donation bins out of desperation, she said. "That would be painful, and it would not be quick".

The fire service also had to cut some of the donation box away in their attempts to free the woman. Once again, the man was found lodged in the charity donation bin and was pronounced dead at the scene. If the organizations don't remove the bins then the city may take further steps, such as a bylaw, he said.

That's why one engineer has formed an emergency taskforce at the University of British Columbia's Okanagan campus with the aim of retrofitting the existing donation bins to make them safer.

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