Area firefighters participate in grain bin rescue training - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Area firefighters participate in grain bin rescue training

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) -

It is harvest time in the Heartland. That means more people working in and around grain bins.

It can be dangerous work. In 2014 a Bloomfield man died in a grain bin accident. That's why local firefighters are making sure they're prepared to respond to these incidents.

The simulator is about as real as you can get. When someone is inside, the auger starts going and pulls the person down, like quicksand.

The victim is then trapped, the pressure of the grain prevents them from moving at all.

On Wednesday, a specialized rescue team made up of firefighters from Cape Girardeau, Jackson and Sikeston participated in a training course on this type of rescue.

The rescue technique uses panels to build wall around the victim, then sucks the grain out, freeing the victim to be hoisted out of the bin

Unfortunately, local farmers say real-life accidents like this are all too common.

"'Once you get sucked down, you're just gone. I just cringe every time I hear about a grain bin accident,” Dale Steffens said.

Nationwide, 62 percent of grain bin accidents are deadly, that's why this training is essential.

"As far as grain bin engulfments, any incident is too many, that's why we are here with this simulator and getting out and educating the public,” Ryan Rascher, special operations training coordinator, said.

These firefighters say happy endings to every accident is why they train.

The firefighters also review self-rescue techniques and discussed different equipment and tools that can be used during rescues.

The training equipment was funded through grants and donations from companies like Brock and MFA. The simulator is the only one of it’s kind in the state.

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