N.C. teen falls into wood chipper, dies during first day of work

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Mason Cox, 19, was putting tree limbs into the wood chipper outside a job site in Kings Mountain when he fell inside. (KTRK)

A teen has died in North Carolina after he was pulled into a wood chipper on his first day on the job.

Mason Cox, 19, was putting tree limbs into the wood chipper outside a job site in Kings Mountain when business owner Jon Crawford and other workers heard the machine get bogged down.

WRAL-TV reports Cox was attempting to kick a tree branch that got jammed in the machine when he was pulled in.

Crawford hit the kill switch and put the machine in reverse, but it was already too late. Cox was pulled into the machine, sending his co-workers and boss into a tailspin of emotion.

His colleagues started running around in shock, ripping off their gloves and their hats. Crawford, meanwhile, suffered a heart attack at the scene and had to be rushed to the hospital.

Cox had just started working for Crawford's Tree and Stump Grinding Service on Saturday.

The victim's grandmother, Alice Neal, told WSOC-TV she has been haunted by the thoughts of her grandson's final moments.

"How could this happen to such a vibrant, young gentleman?" Neal asked.

OSHA is investigating the accident. Police ruled the incident as accidental, and no foul play is suspected.

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worker deathaccidentu.s. & world
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