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Worker dies in fall at Michigan sugar beet processing plant

A man who was helping clean a chute at a sugar beet processing plant in Michigan’s Thumb region fell about 120 feet (37 meters) to his death, authorities said.

Bay County Sheriff’s deputies who were called Tuesday night to the Michigan Sugar Co. plant near Bay City about a fatal accident found the 53-year-old plant worker dead, police said.

Bay County’s chief medical examiner pronounced the man dead at the scene, said Sheriff’s Lt. James Chlebowski. Authorities are withholding the man’s name pending notification of relatives.

Chlebowski told the Bay City Times that the man had been part of a crew working in an elevated area cleaning a chute when he fell to a dual-screw system used to grind sugar beets.

The Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration has been contacted about the worker’s death, he said.

Michigan Sugar Co. said in a statement that it is cooperating with authorities investigating the worker’s death, and added that “the thoughts and prayers of everyone at Michigan Sugar Company are with the family of this employee.”


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