B.C. man recovering after falling off recycling truck

Two days later wife at his side says he’s breathing on his own but non-responsive

Daniel Winston was working just his sixth shift as a swamper on an Emterra recycling truck when he fell off striking his head on the road.

He was brought to Chilliwack General Hospital Wednesday morning then quickly transferred to Royal Columbian Hospital where he underwent emergency surgery due to a brain bleed.

Two days later and Daniel was not conscious nor was he making purposeful movements or following directions, yet his new wife Catherine by his side remained positive.

“He’s still not responding to commands and is being assessed every hour but I’m so incredibly thankful he’s still alive,” she said later that day it happened.

By Thursday, Catherine said he was in the intensive care unit and still not conscious or responding to directions.

”Great news is he’s breathing on his own and is resting comfortably,” she told The Progress. “It’s too early to know how his recovery will play out. He’s not out of the woods yet and we appreciate people’s concerns and prayers. “

There was a large police presence Wednesday on Kipp Avenue between Corbould and Edward streets leading to many questions about what happened.

• READ MORE: VIDEO: Garbage truck examined after worker injured downtown Chilliwack

Witnesses posted on social media that they saw a man lying on the road at Corbould and Kipp.

“He was in very rough shape when they took him to hospital, and not moving at all,” one said.

Two Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement (CVSE) were on the scene examining the truck.

Chilliwack RCMP media spokesperson Cpl. Mike Rail said soon after it happened that it was not a police incident, and that CVSE and WorkSafeBC were investigating.

Asked about the safety issue regarding swampers on garbage trucks, Catherine said he had only worked five prior shifts so had little history with the job. She added that she couldn’t comment anyway because the accident is still under investigation.

• RELATED: Worker seriously injured in Chilliwack workplace accident

”I will say that the support and care from Emterra and the public has been humbling and we’re thankful.”

As for the rules for garbage trucks, WorkSafeBC guidelines say swampers must have a footboard to stand on or a platform to sit on, and hand-holds. They are also required to have safety belts, harness or other restraint “except where the worker is a swamper riding on the back of a garbage truck during short pickup runs at speeds of less than 20 km/h.”

As for Daniel, by Friday morning he was in a high acuity care unit. Catherine said he was restless and moaning a lot, likely because doctors cut back on pain medication in order to do a neurological exam.

On the bright side, he was completely breathing on his own and, as she put it, “looks more like himself.”

Often when someone is seriously injured, friends create GoFundMe pages to help out the family, but Catherine said that’s not for them.

“Work, [WorkSafeBC] and church/family will help if needed. Once he stabilizes I will go back to work. So much is unknown right now we literally take it hour by hour.”

Catherine did say she was surprised how many people seem to care about how he is doing.

”Especially strangers. It’s encouraging!”

Catherine’s positive attitude, despite these last few frightening days, comes through in her Facebook posts where she updates friends and family about Daniel’s condition. The two have been married for just nine months.

“Our faith is strong and will see us through. We’re on a marathon recovery, not a sprint.”

“Today is a new day!”


@PeeJayAitch
paul.henderson@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Agassiz Community Health Centre welcomes its newest doctor

Nikki Cohen is one of three doctors practicing at the local health clinic

No home for Agassiz Community Garden on school district land

The garden is still homeless after SD78 said no to the society using the McCaffrey School property

Life rings, signs to improve safety on Harrison waterfront

Harrison council approved $125,000 in aquatic safety projects for the beach

PHOTOS: Harrison students take on the Bunny Run

Harrison Hot Springs Elementary students dressed up for the Easter event

No more mobile vendors on Harrison beach

The approval of an updated business licence bylaw means Nolan Irwin is without a cart

VIDEO: Agassiz, Harrison celebrate National Pet Day

From cats and dogs to lizards and chickens, residents showed off the animals that enrich their lives

Bodies of 3 mountain climbers recovered after last week’s Banff avalanche

The men disappeared while attempting to climb the east face of Howse Peak in the Icefields Parkway

Happy birthday: Queen Elizabeth II turns 93 on Easter Sunday

Sunday is the first of two birthday celebrations each year for the queen

RCMP confirm witnesses say body found at Kelowna’s Gyro Beach

Police tape is blocking part of the beach and several RCMP officers are on scene.

Police say ‘no major incidents’ at 4/20, Vancouver Park Board assessing

The first smoke-out held since legalization saw 60,000 people at Vancouver’s Sunset Beach

VIDEO: Langley firefighters spend hours battling blaze in vacant home

Cause of the late-night fire in Willoughby is still under investigation

B.C. fire department rescues kittens

Enderby homeowner not aware kittens in wood pile near garbage pile fire that got out of hand

RCMP looking for witnesses to four-vehicle crash in Burnaby

Police suspect impaired driving was a contributing factor

Most Read