Clothing-donation bins like this one in the 17000-block of 16 Avenue are to be removed, Inclusion BC announced Thursday. (Tracy Holmes photo)

Third B.C. city bans clothing donation bins after recent deaths

Richmond joins West Vancouver and Burnaby

Richmond has become the third city in B.C. to crack down on clothing donation bins, citing safety concerns after multiple people died getting stuck in them.

The city issued a “temporary removal” order Tuesday to all five organizations with bins in the city, spokesperson Ted Townsend said in an email to Black Press Media.

The organizations will have 24 hours to remove all 24 bins, or they can lock them until they figure out a removal plan.

Burnaby and West Vancouver have already banned donation bins after a man died in a West Vancouver bin last week and a woman died in a Toronto one Tuesday.

READ MORE: Man’s death prompts B.C. city to shut clothing donation bins

Inclusion BC also announced plans to pull 146 clothing donation containers from sites around the province.

Eight people have died involving donation bins in Canada since 2015, and a major Canadian manufacturer has announced it would stop making the bins until they sorted out the safety concerns.

“Most of the bins [in Richmond] have similar mechanisms to those where fatalities have occurred,” Townsend said.

Such bins will not be allowed in the city going forward, Townsend said, and anyone applying for permission to install future donation bins will have to design a way to minimize the safety risk.

READ MORE: UBC prof hopes students’ idea to retrofit clothing bins will prevent deaths


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