Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Maintenance worker Michael Burris, of Lebanon, IN was crushed to death when he was caught inside a recycling machine at Plastic Recycling Inc.

Plastic Recycling worker's death ruled an accident
Vic Ryckaert , vic.ryckaert@indystar.com 

November 11, 2016

The death of a 31-year-old man killed Thursday at a south-side recycling facility has been ruled an accident.

Michael Burris, of Lebanon, was crushed to death when he was caught inside a
recycling  machine at Plastic Recycling Inc., 2015 S. Pennsylvania St., about 1:30 a.m. Thursday.

The Marion County coroner's office said Burris died of blunt force injuries to his head, body and extremities.

Fred Read, the plant's general manager, said authorities are still investigating what exactly went wrong.

"We're all deeply saddened," Read said. "We're all thinking about the family."

Burris was hired in August and worked in maintenance, Read said.

This was Burris' second stint with the company. He had moved to North Carolina and was rehired after moving back to Indiana, Read said.

According to a police report, Burris was trying to unclog a recycling machine when it turned on while he was inside.

Reed said the machine melts and compresses fluffy, lightweight plastic into dense pellets that are sold to factories to make picture frames and other plastic goods.

The Indiana Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating Burris' death, spokeswoman Amanda Stanley said. By law, the investigation must be finished within six months.

Plastic Recycling Inc. has a clean safety record, according to a search of an Indiana database.

An inspection in 2005 found problems with safety guards on Plastic Recycling's machines, Stanley said. Another inspection conducted in 2006 found no violations.

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Full Service Recycling

  • Closed Loop Programs
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  • Grinding
  • Blending
  • Aspirating
  • Compounding
  • Densifying/Pelletizing


  • Dropped Trailers
  • Warehousing
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