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Grocer employee gets caught in meat grinder in SLO

An employee for wholesale grocer Vitco got caught in a grinder Thursday after reaching in to try to dislodge a piece of meat, the San Luis Obispo Fire Department said.
An employee for wholesale grocer Vitco got caught in a grinder Thursday after reaching in to try to dislodge a piece of meat, the San Luis Obispo Fire Department said.

An employee for wholesale grocer Vitco got caught in a grinder Thursday after reaching in to try to dislodge a piece of meat, the San Luis Obispo Fire Department said.

About 2 p.m. at the facility on Capitolio Way, the employee, a male in his 20s, reached into the hopper of a grinder to dislodge meat that appeared to be stuck when part of the machine caught on his sleeve and pulled him in, according to Battalion Chief Bob Bisson.

A co-worker reportedly heard the man screaming and hit a kill switch just before the man's arm reached the grinding section of the machine.

"We believe his co-worker literally saved his life by hitting the kill switch," Bisson said.

The employee's arm was heavily fractured in several places, according to Bisson.

The fire department used hydraulic rescue machines to dismantle the machine and pull the employee out. The employee was taken to Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center in San Luis Obispo.

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