Homeless Man Survives Garbage Truck Crushing

West Palm Beach, FL (AP) -- A homeless man in Florida says he's hurting, but happy to be alive after getting crushed in a garbage truck.

Robert Baswell fell asleep in a trash bin and was dumped into the back of a garbage truck Monday in West Palm Beach.

Baswell told the Palm Beach Post he screamed as he was crushed against hamburger leftovers, dead rats and other refuse at least seven times. Once, he used a dead opossum to try to cushion the blow.

He says as he mustered one last scream, the trash collector happened to see him.

Firefighters spent almost a half hour pulling pieces of trash out by hand to free him.

Baswell suffered broken legs and ribs, but in the words of a West Palm Beach Fire Rescue spokesman, "he is one lucky dude."

Copyright 2007 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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