KFB’s safety manager recently attended KU’s Kansas Fire and Rescue training event: Grain Engulfment Rescue where she received training alongside firefighters from Fort Riley and Junction City. The goal of this training is to prepare grain facility management, plant personnel and Fire Department personnel for their roles in the event of a grain bin engulfment incident.
The day began with a PowerPoint highlighting grain entrapment statistics (it only take two or three seconds to become entrapped in flowing grain and another 10 seconds for an adult to be totally submerged), an overall summary of how entrapments may occur* (see below) and other issues that could affect a rescue effort. Participants also reviewed several case studies and discussed various safety factors involved with each incident.
In the afternoon attendees headed outside to the mobile grain engulfment simulation trailer which was designed to simulate grain entrapment and train first responders how to rescue victims. This customized equipment includes a grain bin, hopper and an assortment of rescue tools and equipment designed to help rescue victims from potentially perilous situations. The instructors taught various methods of grain bin rescue including using ropes, rescue tubes and heavy-duty saws.
*Entrapment generally occurs when a worker enters a bin to dislodge large portions of grain kernels that have stuck together, preventing them from being extracted by bin machinery. Whether entrapment occurs from the collapse of vertical grain walls or bridged grain (grain kernels stuck together to form a deceptively treacherous crusted ceiling), or entrapment in flowing grain, these are critical situations where time is limited, locating victims is often difficult, and rescue is treacherous.
The Kansas Fire & Rescue Training Institute, headquartered in Lawrence, provides training for thousands of firefighters in Kansas communities each year. To arrange training in your community, contact them at (866) 804-8841. For more information, visit their Facebook page.