City of Delta staff recently approved new, redesigned clothing donation bins after imposing a partial ban on the contraptions in January.
Council had ordered the removal of all donation bins from the city on Jan. 14, regardless of location or design, after two bin-related deaths in Canada within days of one another. One man died after trying to climb into a bin in West Vancouver on Dec. 30 and, just over a week later, a woman in Toronto died in much the same way on Jan. 8.
Two weeks later council softened its stance, adopting an amendment that would allow for bins that have an opening too small for people to climb through will be allowed, as will be ones that are locked away from the public or have been certified safe by an accredited and Delta-approved organization.
Hugh Davies, manager of property use at the City of Delta, told the Reporter the new bins have been in use for about two weeks now and that they addressed safety concerns council voiced in January.
Davies explained that designs of earlier bins allowed for body parts to be squashed when weight was applied to the handle, which has led to multiple deaths in recent years across North America as people tried “fish hooking” for items in the bin.
He added council did not have to sign off on the new bins since it was the bylaw enforcement office that suspended the business licences in the first place.
Six of the new bins are owned by Green Inspiration and the company’s administrative and development manager, Pavel Lalev, said they redesigned the chute through which bags and items are deposit so that there is no access to the inside of a bin.
“The manufacturer moved the secondary baffle that moves in the opposite direction and basically the bin cannot be entered into through that chute,” Lalev said.
He said that Green Inspiration had this design even before the city’s ban but not at all the company’s locations in Delta. Currently, they have four bins in Tsawwassen, and one each in Ladner and North Delta.