Man rescued from garbage truck, seriously injured

Holly Fournier
The Detroit News

A 40-year-old man was trapped in the back of a garbage truck early Wednesday as it drove two miles and made more than a dozen stops in Mount Clemens and Harrison Township, according to the Macomb County Sheriff's Office.

The man was rescued by the truck driver and fire personnel around 6:30 a.m. at the Harrison Township Fire Department on Crocker near Jefferson, officials said. He accidentally was dumped into the truck more than two miles away, behind the First United Methodist Church at 57 southbound Gratiot in Mount Clemens.

The driver made 14 trash pick-up stops before discovering the victim and racing to a nearby fire department for help, according to officials.

"The victim was able to tell deputies that he was in a garbage dumpster behind (the church) when the truck arrived and emptied the dumpster in the truck," officials said in a statement. The man was rushed to McLaren Hospital for treatment to serious injuries.

Investigators interviewed the 36-year-old driver of the garbage truck, a Southfield resident who told police he began his shift around 3 a.m. driving a Waste Management hauler. He spotted the victim after pulling into a Harrison Township McDonald's parking lot at Metropolitan Parkway and Crocker.

"He pulled into the McDonald’s (and) he glanced at a camera monitor and saw the man’s arm waving from inside the back of the truck," officials said.

The driver immediately rushed to the nearby Harrison Township Fire Department, where firefighters rescued the man from the truck.

The truck driver is cooperating with the investigation and no charges are expected at this time, officials said.