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Donation bins have killed people. These students have a solution

A man tries to retrieve items from a clothing donation bin in Vancouver, on Wednesday December 12, 2018. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)

Each winter, someone desperate for warmth in Canada climbs into a clothing donation bin, and dies there. At least eight Canadians have been found dead in the bins since 2015. They’re small, often packed with clothing, with little air and once you’re inside it can be impossible to get out.

There are larger issues than design problems at play here-homelessness, shelter systems, a housing crisis-but surely at least making the bins themselves safer is possible… isn’t it? A professor in British Columbia gave his students a taste of real-world engineering problems in an effort to find out.

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