‘Devastating situation’: Toddler crushed to death by machinery at family-owned business in Cohasset

Police are investigating the death of a 2-year-old boy who was crushed Thursday afternoon by a piece of heavy machinery at a family-owned business in Cohasset, authorities said.

Emergency crews responding to South Main Street near Hajj Auto Service around 12:30 p.m. learned a toddler had suffered serious injuries in an accident involving a skid-steer loader behind the business, according to the Norfolk District Attorney’s Office and the Cohasset Police Department.

The toddler was with his grandfather, who is the owner of the auto repair shop, when a large piece of the loader that a man was operating fell on him, investigators said.

Police said the toddler’s grandfather rushed him to the police station for help. He was then transported to South Shore Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

People who know the man described his family as “close-knit,” calling the incident absolutely heartwrenching.

“It’s just a devastating situation because I know he’s a good man,” local business owner Lisa Wrin said. “He’s been here a long time. I can’t imagine the pain that he must be going through right now.”

Mel McLaughlin, who owns a shop across the street from Hajj’s, said the man had an inseparable bond with his grandson, taking great pride in the time they spent together.

“The grandpa brought over the little boy every day pretty much just for a piece of bubble gum and he took great pride and brought him everywhere he went,” McLaughlin said. “There was definitely an unconditional love. That is why the story itself is so much more heartbreaking.”

The names of those involved in the incident haven’t been made public, but police noted that the boy was just a couple of weeks away from his third birthday.

Officials called the accident a “horrible tragedy,” adding that it doesn’t appear to be criminal in nature.

An investigation into what led up to the boy being crushed beneath the loader remains ongoing.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is assisting state and local police with the investigation.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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