‘Hero’ dad dies after collapsing at work and being crushed by his own bin lorry


A “hero” dad with a chronic heart condition collapsed and died under the wheel of his bin lorry, an inquiry has found.

Council worker Robert McMillan, 55, was found crushed underneath a massive Mercedes Econic motor after a horror accident on 17 January 2019.

An inquiry found that he had a history of ischaemic heart disease likely suffered cardiac failure after becoming trapped under the vehicle.

The Rangers fan was working with colleagues collecting refuse for South Lanarkshire Council when the incident occurred at around 10.20am in East Kilbrade, Glasgow.

He leaves behind wife Lesley, daughter Lauren, and his mother, brother, and two sisters.

The inquiry heard the lorry was not believed to have any mechanical defects and that Mr McMillan was likely “lifeless” before it passed over him.

In a written judgment Sheriff Daniel Kelly QC said: “The most likely explanation to emerge from the police road traffic unit investigation, expressed most clearly by Sergeant Bell, was that some substantial medical episode occurred, resulting in Mr McMillan collapsing onto the roadway in front of the lorry and not moving as it passed over him.

“That such an episode occurred is consistent with the post mortem report, which concluded that Mr McMillan had significant ischaemic heart disease, which was of a severity that it could have caused sudden death at any time and which could have played a part in his death by potentially being a factor that had led to collapse prior to being run over.

“It may be concluded, therefore, that Mr McMillan has fallen to the roadway in front of the lorry, likely having collapsed. In the short time that Mr McMillan walked down the nearside of the lorry, in front of it, and collapsed, the collision investigators concluded that it was possible for him to have done that without the driver having seen him.”

The inquiry ruled there were tragically “no precautions which could reasonably have been taken and which might realistically have avoided the death”.

Mr McMillan’s grief-stricken daughter paid tribute to her “hero” dad in a statement, saying: “I never ever thought I would have to write this not today at least.

“Today has now become my hardest day to live, as my dad has passed away due to an accident at work.

“My best friend, hero and most of all daddy is gone and knowing I’m never going to see him again is breaking me to pieces.

South Lanarkshire Council roads boss Michael McGlynn said everyone associated with the local authority was “deeply saddened at the death of our colleague”.