Defending against grain entrapments
Safety contest and educational campaign raises awareness of grain accidents
Though the hazards of entering a grain bin are well-known, farmers and agricultural professionals often underestimate them until it’s too late. It only takes seconds, or a simple mistake, for an adult to sink in the quicksand-like flow of grain and become fully entrapped or engulfed. Such accidents have resulted in a 62% fatality rate over the past 50 years according to Purdue University.
To raise awareness of these dangers and prevent all-too-common accidents, Nationwide has opened its eighth annual Nominate Your Fire Department Contest in recognition of Grain Bin Safety Week. The goal is to deliver critical education and resources to agricultural professionals and promote safe bin-entry procedures when entry is absolutely necessary. The program also awards life-saving rescue equipment and training to rural fire departments, who are often the first and only line of defense when an entrapment occurs. Nominations for this year’s Nominate Your Fire Department Contest are open until April 30.
“Nationwide's mission of protecting people, businesses and futures with extraordinary care directly aligns with our Grain Bin Safety advocacy program,” said Brad Liggett, president of Nationwide Agribusiness. “Now more than ever, farmers are being recognized for the important role they play in food security and fueling our country. We are proud of our ability to provide grain rescue tubes and proper training to help protect the men and women who feed the world, and we aspire to make sure every fire department that needs it has access to these safety resources.”
This year, Grain Bin Safety Week runs from Feb. 21 – 27. Since initiating its Grain Bin Safety advocacy campaign in 2014, Nationwide and its Grain Bin Safety Week partners have supplied grain rescue tubes and training to 152 fire departments in 29 states.
At least four fire departments included in the program have utilized their tubes and training to rescue workers trapped in grain bins.