Oregon Man Pulled Into Wood Chipper Sues for $16.7 Million

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – A 35-year-old man who was seriously injured when he went head first into a wood chipper seeks $16.7 million in a lawsuit against the machine’s Iowa-based manufacturer.

The accident happened in February 2016, while Noly Chouinard of Eugene, Oregon, was working for a tree-care company at a property in Leaburg.

The lawsuit says a rope got caught in the machine and pulled him in. It says Chouinard’s knee hit an emergency shut-off button, but not before he suffered skull fractures, ligament tears and other injuries that will leave him permanently disabled.

The suit filed Tuesday in Portland says the machine made by Vermeer Manufacturing lacked readily available technology to prevent catastrophic injuries, such as automatically shutting off when a person comes into contact with the framework.

The manufacturer has yet to be served with the complaint.

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