An employee of Lyon & Sons in Camden, New Jersey died after falling into a vat of hot chocolate on Wednesday, July 8, 2009.
Vincent Smith II, 29, of Camden, was standing on a nine-foot-high platform loading chunks of raw chocolate into a melting tank at Cocoa Services in Camden, N.J.
Smith fell around 10:30 in the morning. Coworkers acted quickly to try and save Smith. One rushed to turn the machine off and the two others tried to pull him out.
However, Smith was already struck in the head by an agitator and killed.
The rectangular vat, which was 8 feet deep, 14 feet long and 6 feet wide, was churning a batch of chocolate for Hershey’s when the accident occurred, Jason Laughlin, spokesman for the Camden County Prosecutor’s Office, said.
Lyon & Sons mixes and melts raw chocolate for use by food and candy manufacturers such as Hershey Foods. The plant was quickly shut down for the day following the accident.