Man saved from grain bin near Brighton

BRIGHTON (GTNS) — “We have had this grain bin rescue tube for just over two years and this is the first time we actually used it,” Brighton Fire Chief Bill Farmer commented after his department helped extract a subject trapped in a grain bin Tuesday evening.

According to the Washington County call log, at 6:33 p.m., a caller at 1539 335th St. in rural Brighton called the Washington County Communications Center to report being stuck inside a grain bin. Brighton Fire, Brighton QRS, Washington Fire, Washington County Rescue, Washington County Ambulance and the Washington County Sheriff’s Department all responded. AirCare was placed on stand by, but later disregarded.

Farmer said when his crew arrived at the bin, they found a subject trapped up to his waist in the grain. Farmer explained the subject appeared to have been trying to unload some bad grain and when it wasn’t unloaded right he went into the bin. Farmer explained when the auger in a bin is running, it has the potential of drawing a person into the grain. Farmer said the person could not get out, which is when he called the communications center. Firefighters found the subject had shut off the auger on the bin, so it was not believed he could have gone any deeper into the grain.

On arrival, Brighton Fire deployed the grain bin rescue tube, which is designed to keep any additional grain from getting around the subject. The firefighters began scooping out the grain holding the subject in place. When Washington Fire Department arrived, the department has a cordless auger which was used to get remainder of the grain out. Farmer reported the subject was checked out by the Washington County Ambulance personnel and found to be fine.

While the department has not had to rescue a subject from a grain bin in the past, it is something area firefighters train for. Farmer said the department trains at least once a year to extract someone caught in a grain bin. The equipment to remove a subject was provided from a Farm Credit Services of America in Mt. Pleasant.

“Everything went really good,” he said.