Worker dies after falling into grinder at meat processing plant: Report

An employee who reportedly got his leg caught in a waste grinder at a Canton, Ohio, meat processing plant has died.

Police and firefighters responded to Fresh Mark around 4:50 p.m. on Saturday. An investigator for the coroner’s office told local media that Samuel Martinez, 62, stepped onto a chute and became trapped in a waste auger, according to the Akron Beacon Journal.

Martinez, a Guatemalan national, was pronounced dead at the scene. The Canton Repository noted that Martinez is at least the second person to die at the Canton-based meat plant since opening in 1976: In 2011, Marcos Perez-Velasquez, 20, also from Guatemala, was electrocuted as he plugged in a fan while standing in water, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) detailed.

Canton Police characterized Saturday’s ordeal to WJW as an “industrial accident.”

Fresh Mark sells bacon, ham, hot dog, and deli meat under Superior’s and Sugardale brands. The company issued the following statement hours after the 62-year-old’s death:

“This afternoon just before 5 p.m., we experienced a work-related fatality at our Canton facility. Our primary concern rests with the wellbeing of this employee’s family, as well as with the safety and well-being of all our employees in the Canton and other Fresh Mark facilities. We are working with authorities to determine the facts regarding this incident.”

Reports indicate that an autopsy was performed Sunday.

[Featured Image: Fresh Mark/WJW video screengrab]