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Community Safety
News covering policy and issues related to city and county governments in the Ozarks.

UPDATE: Springfield Police Investigating Accident at Landfill that Killed City Worker

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City of Springfield - Badge System Photo

Update 2/12/16:  Springfield Police say the maintenance worker killed this week at the city landfill was struck by a tractor-trailer.  According to a news release from the Springfield Police Department, 53-year-old John Wesley Choate was pinned between the trailer and a piece of equipment Wednesday as the semitrailer was backing up. Choate was transported to a hospital, where he died later that day.

Choate had worked for the city since 2008.

The Department of Environmental Services, which oversees the landfill, will conduct a review of the incident.

Original story 2/10/16:  The city of Springfield says one of its maintenance workers died today after an accident at the city landfill.

53-year-old John Wesley Choate had worked at the city in various capacities since 2008, according to a news release issued Wednesday afternoon.

“We are all saddened by the loss of one of our own” said City Manager Greg Burrs said in a statement. “Please keep the Choate family in your thoughts and prayers.”

The city is not releasing information as to the extent of the accident at this time, citing an investigation being conducted by the Springfield Police Department. It says the Department of Environmental Services, which oversees the landfill, will complete an internal review of the incident. Crisis counselors will be available to employees.

Ebeneezer Fire and Springfield Fire Department responded to a call at about 11 a.m. with a heavy rescue unit, engine company and battalion chief. Choate was airlifted to a local hospital.

The city said Wednesday that the landfill is closed and anticipates it reopening tomorrow morning.