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Grain bins can be some of the most hazardous places to work on a farm. Whether it’s taking a quick shortcut or just a simple lapse of reason, accidents happen. Some have dire or even fatal consequences. It takes just seconds for a worker inside a bin to become completely engulfed and overwhelmed by flowing grain. And saving lives when that scenario unfolds takes specialized rescue techniques and equipment.

Eliminating grain entrapment injuries and deaths is the goal of Grain Bin Safety Week. Initiated by Nationwide® in 2014, the Grain Bin Safety Week program raises awareness to the:

“It doesn’t happen often, but when a life is lost to grain entrapment, it totally changes rural communities. That’s why we are so passionate about Grain Bin Safety Week,” according to Delaware Farm Bureau Executive Director Don Clifton. “We’ve heard the stories and have seen how it affects farm families. But we can do something about it.”

Are your local first responders ready?

In conjunction with Grain Bin Safety Week, Nationwide and National Education Center for Agricultural Safety’s (NECAS) Nominate Your Fire Department Contest awards emergency first responders with grain rescue tubes and hands-on rescue training to help save lives. In Delaware alone, the contest has awarded grain rescue tubes and training to 12 fire departments.

Rural firefighters are often the first and only line of defense when someone becomes trapped in stored grain. Most rural firefighters lack the training and equipment needed to perform a successful grain bin rescue. This compounds the problem. And there are often many miles between rescuers and victims. Even a delay of a few minutes when someone is trapped in a grain bin makes the situation a matter of life and death.

“Especially if there’s not a grain rescue tube and trained first responders in your area, consider nominating your fire department or financially supporting Grain Bin safety Week,” said Delaware Farm Bureau Marketing Coordinator Mikayla Paul. “Together and with the right tools and training, we can save lives.”

Nominate your fire department

Visit to see if a grain rescue tube has been awarded near you. If you don’t see one close by, nominate your fire department today.

More about Grain Bin Safety Week

Grain Bin Safety Week is held the third full week of February, while the Nominate Your Fire Department Contest runs from January 1 to April 30 annually. Since its start, the contest has attracted more than 11,000 nominations. Nationwide, NECAS and other generous sponsors have provided grain rescue tubes and training to 332 fire departments in 32 states. At least seven fire departments have utilized their rescue tubes and training to successfully rescue entrapped workers.  

NECAS Director Dan Neenan travels with a state-of-the-art mobile grain entrapment simulator to the winning locations to conduct the training session and award the tube. Loaded on a 20-foot trailer and able to hold approximately 100 bushels of grain, the simulator is the perfect training ground.

“One injury or life lost from grain entrapment is too many. We encourage everyone to nominate their local first responders,” said Nationwide Agribusiness President Brad Liggett.

Find out more about Grain Bin Safety Week and how you can get involved at

Post Author: Mikayla Paul

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