Thursday, July 27, 2017

Berry Plastics worker Noel Oquendo, 46, of Washington, NJ died after he was struck in the head by machinery in Lopatcong Township

Noel Oquendo (right) with his wife

Lopatcong Township police on Wednesday morning identified the man who died Tuesday at a township plastics manufacturing business.

Noel Oquendo, 46, of Washington, died after an incident involving him trying to resolve an issue with a machine he was using, police Chief Jason Garcia said.

Oquendo was struck in the head, but Garcia didn't have a cause and manner of the Berry Plastics employee's death. The Morris County medical examiner will make that determination.

The company employee was from Washington, police say.

Oquendo was working at a machine that printed labels for plastic bottles before they were shipped, Garcia said Tuesday.

What Garcia termed an industrial accident inside the business at 190 Stryker Road is being investigated by OSHA.

A local manager for the Evansville, Indiana-based corporation didn't return a phone call on Tuesday.

Here is some info on Noel Oquendo form his Facebook page:

Operator at Berry Global
Lives in Washington, New Jersey
From Hoboken, New Jersey


By Tony Rhodin,


A 46-year-old Washington man died Tuesday in an industrial accident at a Lopatcong Township manufacturing company, police report.

The man was working in an area with numerous machines at Berry Plastics, 190 Stryker Road, police Chief Jason Garcia said at the scene.

A preliminary investigation indicates the man was struck in the head just after 11:30 a.m. "as he was tending to a possible problem with the machine he was manning," Garcia said later in a news release. The machine printed labels for plastic bottles before they were shipped, the chief added.

The man was a company employee, Garcia said.

The Morris County medical examiner will determine the cause and manner of death and the man's identity will be released once family is notified, Garcia confirmed.

OSHA sent personnel to investigate the workplace incident at the specialty plastics maker, according to the Avenel, New Jersey, office.

A local plant manager didn't immediately return a phone call seeking more information. The company is based in Evansville, Indiana, with several plants throughout the world.

As a light rain fell early Tuesday afternoon, a few employees quietly got in their cars and drove off, but outside of police vehicles, it was hard to tell something had happened.

A sign outside an entrance says, "Safety's not a job it's our way of life."