The Helena Police Department says a man was not injured after he was sleeping in a dumpster and got dropped into the back of a city truck.

It happened just after 8 a.m. Tuesday, in the 1800 block of Last Chance Gulch.

HPD Lt. Cory Bailey said the truck picked up the cardboard recycling dumpster where the 47-year-old man was sleeping, then dumped the contents in the back. He said the driver saw debris flying out of the truck as he pulled away. He then heard the man pounding on the walls and stopped to get him out.

Officers put the man under arrest for two previous warrants, one out of District Court and one out of Municipal Court. Bailey said it appears he is a transient.

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Bailey said the man was lucky not to be hurt.

“It’s a major safety concern,” he said. “That’s not a safe environment. He could have seriously been injured or even killed by being in the back of that garbage truck, so we just want to remind people to stay out of dumpsters.”

Helena actually has a city ordinance prohibiting people from climbing into dumpsters. Bailey said it’s intended to discourage people from digging through the garbage.

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