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Inquest to open into Sunderland bin fatality

By 29/12/2017News

An inquest is to open next week into the death of Jay McLaren, a member of the public who was found dead in a commercial waste bin at a recycling site in Houghton le Spring, Sunderland on 23 December 2017.

Mr McLaren, 28, according to Northumbria Police, was last seen at about 04.15 in the early hours of Saturday 23 December outside the Arizona and Purple Bar in Sunderland town centre. Local media suggest that Mr McLaren is likely to have sought to sleep in the bin on what was a cold night.


The deceased was found in a waste/recycling bin after leaving a bar in Sunderland.

A spokesman for the police said: “From here, he is understood to have been taken to the recycling plant after entering a bin that was later collected in the early hours of Saturday 23rd December 2017.”

It is understood that Mr McLaren’s body was found at a transfer station and recycling site in Houghton le Spring (seven miles south west of Sunderland), belonging to  Max Recycle, a brand of The Durham Company Ltd.


In a statement, Northumbria Police said that while “it is believed there was no third party involvement, we are seeking information from the public to help trace Mr McLaren’s last movements”.

And, commenting with reference to the incident, the police urged drinkers and partygoers to stay safe on a night out, “particularly as New Year’s Eve approaches”.

A spokeswoman for the Coroner’s Office in Newcastle upon Tyne told that an inquest is due to open next week with details being finalised.

A comment on the incident has been requested from Max Recycle. The company notes that it is “the largest private collector of trade waste in North East England, North West England, Southern Lakeland & Southern Scotland.”


The potential for serious or fatal injuries to people sleeping in bins, usually 1100 litre wheeled containers, has been a longstanding concern within the waste management sector, particularly in cold weather.

Back in 2006, Biffa issued a warning to homeless people (see story) which was followed by a report in 2014 (see story).

In 2016 B&M Waste relaunched a campaign aimed at ensuring people did not sleep in bins (see story).

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Source: Waste Managment