Updated: There are additional details surrounding an industrial accident that took the life of a plastics recycling worker in Ohio.
A report from the Paulding County Sheriff's Office indicated Shawn Suffel was operating a grinding machine at the time of the Aug. 3 accident at Modern Plastic Recovery Inc. of Haviland, Ohio.
A safety official at the company told police she was told that the machine exploded and hit Suffel in the head, according to an incident report.
Police responding to the scene took photographs and saw “two large pieces of metal that were in the grinder and that were now lying on the ground. The door to the machine is also visible in the photos lying on the ground. It is not clear what piece struck Mr. Suffel,” the report indicates.
Federal officials are looking into the death, a process that could take months.
The Chicago office of the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investing circumstances that lead to the fatality at Modern Plastic Recovery, agency spokesman Scott Allen said.
“OSHA will have up to six months to complete an inspection,” the agency said in a statement.
Suffel's obituary listed him as an employee at Haviland Plastic Products, which makes plastic containers for the horticultural industry from recycled plastic. Modern Plastic is listed as a partner of Haviland Plastic Products on it's website. Modern Plastic recycles high density polyethylene for use in nursery containers and drainage tile, according to its website.
While OSHA could not speak about the ongoing fatality investigation, the agency did indicate Modern Plastic was cited following a November 2016 employee injury.
“In that instance, an employee suffered a severe laceration,” OSHA indicated.
The agency said an employee was using a metal rod to unjam plastic in a hopper when the rod was grabbed by an auger. The company paid $2,993 for that violation. “The citation cited the company for lack of proper procedures to control hazardous energy, because the hopper had not been powered off or locked out to prevent it from operating while the employee cleared the jam,” OSHA said.