Homeless man nearly crushed to death after being tossed into trash truck

San Diego city workers were clearing homeless people's stuff off the sidewalks last month when they scooped up a tent with a man inside and tossed him into a garbage truck.

Here's how The San Diego Union-Tribune's Jeff McDonald describes the scene:

The shrieking came from inside the jumble of tents and bedding and personal belongings scooped off the street.

Arms started flailing and the screams grew louder.

In what can only be described as a jaw-dropping blunder, a homeless man scrambled his way out of a San Diego city trash truck and avoided being crushed to death by mere seconds.

Police officers had approved the area at Commercial Street between 16th and 17th street for clearing before the crew arrived on December 22nd with the trash truck. The workers probably assumed there was nobody inside the tent.

Paz Gomez, deputy chief operating officer, said in an emailed statement to the SDUT:

“This was a terrible incident and all involved were shaken by what occurred. Based on initial accounts, city staff and the city’s abatement contractor tried to follow up with the individual but the person immediately left the scene and couldn’t be located.”

San Diego's cleanup efforts come after the nasty Hepatitis A outbreak last year that killed 20 people and affected nearly 600 before the health emergency was declared over last week.

Part's of the city's downtown have become riddled with homeless camps, and the homeless population in recent years has ballooned past 9,000.

Click here to read more at the San Diego Union-Tribune.

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