Police Investigating Deadly Wood Chipper Accident

Michigan man's jacket apparently got caught on branch
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 21, 2021 5:01 AM CDT
Michigan Man Dies in Wood Chipper Accident
The worker died on the way to a nearby hospital, police say.   (Getty Images/katifcam)

A Michigan man died in a horrific workplace accident this week when he was pulled into a wood chipper, authorities say. The 48-year-old man, part of a crew working at a private residence in West Bloomfield, was apparently pulled into the machine after his jacket got caught on a branch, MLive reports. A coworker who found the severely injured man in the chipper called authorities after the Monday morning accident. Police say emergency services performed first aid at the scene and applied a tourniquet to the victim, who was still conscious, but he died on the way to a nearby hospital, reports Fox 2.

The death is being investigated by police and the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration. It's not clear whether the wood chipper malfunctioned. "Every indication at this point is that his jacket may have been caught on a branch that was being fed into the wood chipper," says Deputy Chief Curt Lawson of the West Bloomfield Police Department. "We've taken an extensive amount of pictures of the equipment to make sure it was operating the way it should have been operating." He adds: "Our hearts go out to the workers on the scene and of course the victim's family." (A helmet saved this Oregon arborist who fell head-first into a wood chipper.)

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