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  1. ITV Report

Body found in the back of a rubbish lorry in south London

Police are investigating after a body was found in the back of a rubbish lorry.

Officers were called early on Monday morning to Bethwin Road in Camberwell.

A Scotland Yard spokesman said the death was being treated as unexplained.

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The lorry was removed from the scene about nine hours later, with a police escort, and no details about the dead man have been given.

We can confirm that a body was discovered in a Biffa vehicle early this morning in south London. We are working with the relevant authorities as they investigate the matter.

– Biffa

News of the death comes on the same day that a report from the waste management firm found that an increasing number of rubbish firms are finding people sheltering in bins.

Biffa's research says that, since 2014, the number of waste companies who have encountered people sleeping in bins has risen from 21% to 35%. Over the same period, there has been a 70% increase in the number of people sleeping rough, the data suggests.

According to the statistics, 70% of these incidents have happened in the winter and spring months, between January and June, however not all have involved people who are homeless.

People who seek temporary shelter after a night out, are also counted in the statistics.

Urgent action is required now to raise awareness of the dangers of seeking shelter in bins. This new research highlights the need not only for the waste industry to take more responsibility for its own practices, but crucially for it to work with its customers to help tackle the issue.

– Michael Topham, chief executive of Biffa

Meanwhile, MP Lilian Greenwood told the Commons that at least seven people have been killed after being accidentally tipped into bin lorries in the last five years, as the number of incidents of rough sleepers seeking shelter in bins has "surged".

She said Biffa recorded 109 near misses in the six months to December. Speaking during housing, communities and local government questions in the chamber, Ms Greenwood said: "Today it's been reported that the problem of rough sleepers seeking shelter in bins has surged in the last five years and, according to the Health and Safety Executive, at least seven people have been killed after being accidentally tipped into bin lorries.

"The waste company Biffa recorded 109 near misses in the six months to December.

"It's shocking that anyone should be so desperate that they would seek refuge in a bin."