Man missing and may be dead in mill accident

Investigators combing wood chip silo on the theory man may have been swept into it by conveyor belt

A man is missing and could be dead in a possible industrial accident last night at the Crofton mill.

Investigators are searching a wood chip silo on site, working under the assumption a man delivering wood chips to the mill for Marpole Transport may have somehow ended up on the conveyor and was swept into the silo.

“On Dec. 9 at approximately 7:50 p.m., the North Cowichan / Duncan RCMP received a call from the Catalyst Mill in Crofton. They were notified that a male making a delivery of woodchips was missing and believed to have been involved in an industrial accident,” North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP Cpl. Jon Stuart said.

“Officers attended to the scene, and determined that there was enough to support the belief that the driver had been taken by a conveyor belt, and carried into one of the storage silos.”

The silos are massive structures used to store chips used in the mill’s operation. Deliveries are routine.

Stuart said the name of the man is not being released at this time. His family has been notified and are aware of the situation.

He added there is nothing to suggest a criminal act at this time. Worksafe BC has been contacted, and will be the lead agency for the investigation.

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