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.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Exercise and cancer to be explored via webinar

UFV’s Dr. Iris Lesser to lead Zoom event for cancer patients and supporters

Abbotsford charities see hike in demand for services during pandemic

Archway Food Bank and Salvation Army work hard to help those impacted

What do you think about these seven proposed Abbotsford pot shops?

Council will decide upon four locations for Abbotsford’s first legal cannabis stores

Return-It depot in Abbotsford part of aluminum-can pilot project

Customers won’t have to separate alcohol and non-alcohol cans from each other

Vancouver double homicide leads to arrest in Harrison Hot Springs Wednesday

VPD and RCMP tracked dumped vehicle connected to killings to Chilliwack

B.C. identifies 20 new COVID-19 cases, travellers specified in count

Pandemic total 3,028 cases, 51 people from outside Canada

Mayors welcome rideshare expansion to eastern Lower Mainland

As of Thursday, Lyft is now offering service throughout Metro Vancouver

Survey, hotline launched amid probe into racist blood-alcohol guessing game at B.C. hospital

Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond has been appointed to lead an investigation by Health Minister Adrian Dix

Canadian policing organization calls for decriminalization of simple illicit drug possession

Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police want policing focus of opioid crisis to be replaced with a health one

Filing deadline in RCMP sexual-harassment class-action extended due to COVID-19

Plaintiffs now have until January 2021 to submit claims for up to $222,000

Jamie Bacon pleads guilty to charge in Surrey Six case

The plea brings an end to a complex legal case that has spanned more than a decade

Hefty undeclared driver charges piling up, ICBC warns customers

Average extra penalty $2,971 after an at-fault accident

B.C. appeals judge’s decision to leave three clubhouses in Hells Angels hands

The province has filed two notices of appeal related to the B.C. Supreme Court decision

Conservation officers relocate Spirit bear known to roam northwestern B.C.

Bear roamed valley north of Terrace for many years

Most Read