Deadly wood chipper accident

Posted November 23, 2009   Grief counselors will be at Poquoson High School in Virginia Monday to help students deal with the sudden, tragic loss of one of their classmates.   A 15-year old student died in a wood chipper accident Sunday evening.   Poquoson Police Chief Cliff Bowen says the teen was working with Old Dominion Tree and Lawn Care Service at a home on Wagner Road.   “They were doing some tree trimming and using a chipper machine to grind up some of the debris,” Bowen said. “Apparently one of the members of the crew was shoveling debris into the back of the chipper, at which time the shovel he was using got caught in the blades and pulled him into the machine.”   The boy died at the scene, Bowen said. The teen’s identity has not been released.   “Based on everything we know this is an accident,” said Chief Bowen. “It’s one the most tragic accidents I’ve seen in my 25 years of law enforcement.”   Reached by phone at his home Sunday night, Poquoson High School Principal Bernard Wright said, “This was a tragic accident. Our hearts go out to the family and friends of this young man.”   “Our crisis team will be there [Monday] with our counselors and counselors from other schools,” said Principal Wright.   Wright deferred further questions to the school district spokesperson.   Many areas, including Poquoson, are still cleaning up following a Nor’easter two weeks ago.

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