Two local entities presented with grain rescue tubes, training

Since 2014, Nationwide’s Grain Bin Safety campaign has awarded 200 rescue tubes to first responders to help prevent grain entrapment deaths


As farmers tend to their crops this season, Nationwide, the country’s number one insurer of farms and ranches, is taking steps to help prevent grain entrapment deaths in rural America. In partnership with the National Education Center for Agricultural Safety (NECAS), Nationwide is awarding 48 fire departments across the country – including Nemaha County Rural Fire District No. 4 in Bern and Valley View Milling in Seneca – with life-saving grain rescue tubes and hands-on training to prepare them to respond when entrapments occur.

After receiving more than 1,000 nominations in the annual Nominate Your Fire Department Contest – a key piece of Nationwide’s Grain Bin Safety advocacy campaign – the insurer and its partners are proud to award grain rescue tubes and training to multiple fire departments and businesses.

Those awardees are: Nemaha County Rural Fire District No. 4 in Bern; Valley View Milling in Seneca; Alexander Rescue Squad in Taylorsville, N.C.; Aurelius Volunteer Fire Department in Auburn, N.Y.; Berlin Fire Department in Berlin, Wisc.; Bloomington Fire in Bloomington, Wisc.; Cambridge Springs Volunteer Fire Department in Cambridge Springs, Pa.; Camden-Wyoming Fire Company in Camden, Del.; Citizens Volunteer Fire Company in Fawn Grove, Pa.; City of Mount Vernon Fire Department in Mount Vernon, Ill.; Clinton-Warren Joint Fire District in Clarksville, Ohio; Clontarf Fire Department in Clontarf, Minn.; Coggon Fire Department/Linn County District 7 in Coggon, Iowa; Downs Fire Department in Downs; East Pembroke Fire Department in Batavia, N.Y.; Fair Grove Fire Protection District in Fair Grove, Mo.; Fillmore Volunteer Fire Department in Fillmore, Ind.; Franklin Township Volunteer Fire Department in Edinboro, Pa.; Friendsville Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department in Friendsville, Md.; Grundy County Emergency Management in Grundy Center, Iowa; Jerome Township Division of Fire in Plain City, Ohio; Kewanee Community Fire Protection District in Kewanee, Ill.; Larned Fire Department in Larned; Madelia Fire Department in Madelia, Minn.; Malden Fire Department in Malden, Mo.; Maxwell Community Volunteer Fire Department in Maxwell, Texas; Mayville Fire and Rescue in Mayville, N.D.; Mendon Fire Department in Mendon, Ill.; New Baden Fire Protection District in New Baden, Ill.; North Bollinger County Fire Protection District in Patton, Mo.; North Callaway Fire Protection District in Kingdom City, Mo.; Northrop Fire Department in Northrop, Minn.; Orlinda Volunteer Fire Department in Orlinda, Tenn.; Oxford Volunteer Fire Department in Oxford, Iowa; Pembina Fire Department in Pembina, N.D.; Pikeville Volunteer Fire Department in Pikeville, Tenn.; Rawlinsville Volunteer Fire Company in Holtwood, Pa.; Ripley Fire Department in Ripley, Ohio; Ronda Community Volunteer Fire Department in Ronda, N.C.; Rugby Volunteer Fire Department in Rugby, N.D.; Sargent Volunteer Fire and Rescue in Sargent, Neb.; Sequoyah County Rural Fire Protection District No. 1 in Gore, Okla.; Sesser Fire Protection District in Sesser, Ill.; Shelby Volunteer Fire Department in Medina, N.Y.; Summit Volunteer Fire Department in Summit, S.D.; Tri-County Fire Department in Waller, Texas; Willards Volunteer Fire Department in Willards, Md.; and Xenia Fire Department in Xenia, Ill.

NECAS, based out of Peosta, Iowa, will deliver the rescue tubes and training to the winning fire departments throughout 2021, traveling to each location with state-of-the-art grain entrapment simulators and rescue tubes. The comprehensive training sessions include classroom education and rescue simulations using the entrapment tools, which are loaded onto 20-foot trailers and able to hold about 100 bushels of grain each.

Nationwide is continuing to work with partners throughout 2021 to provide additional grain rescue tubes and training sessions to fire departments in need. To learn how to get involved and sponsor a rescue tube for your local fire department, visit the Partner With Us webpage.

About the Grain Bin Safety advocacy campaign

According to researchers at Purdue University, more than 900 cases of grain engulfment have been reported in the past 50 years with a fatality rate of 62 percent. In 2020, grain entrapments led to 20 deaths.

“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,” said Brad Liggett, Nationwide’s president of Agribusiness. “Adding to the risk is a lack of rescue equipment available to local fire departments and emergency responders who are called for help when a worker becomes trapped.”

To help address this industry issue, Nationwide initiated its Grain Bin Safety campaign in 2014 to educate those entering grain bins about the hazards involved and the importance of implementing safe entry procedures. A central piece of the campaign, the Nominate Your Fire Department Contest, aims to address the lack of specialized resources available to fire departments who are responding to bin entrapments.

“Since 2014, Nationwide has made it a mission to bring an end to this industry issue by raising awareness of the dangers and collecting funds to supply needed equipment to front line rescuers tasked with responding when accidents occur,” Liggett said. “With long-standing roots in agriculture, we’re thankful for the work America’s farmers do and for the contributions of our valuable partners who help us make a difference in rural communities.”

With 2021 donations included, Nationwide and partners have supplied these resources to 200 departments across 30 states. At least four fire departments have utilized their rescue tubes and training to successfully rescue entrapped workers.

“We’re incredibly proud to award more resources in 2021 than ever before and to continue growing these efforts until we can ensure every fire department that needs it has access to these critical rescue supplies,” Liggett said.

The program is supported by Nationwide and the following generous partners:

NECAS, KC Supply, Specialty Risk Insurance, CHS, ProValue Insurance, Mid Atlantic Farm Credit, Lutz Agency, Inc., SBS Insurance Agency, Mark Bruns Agency, New York Farm Bureau, Ohio Farm Bureau, Maryland Farm Bureau, Delaware Farm Bureau, Pennsylvania Farm Bureau, West Side Salvage, Gregerson Salvage, Scoular Grain, GROWMARK, Graham Insurance Agency, Valley Insurance Agency Alliance, Beacon Insurance Group, Eclipse Insurance Agency, LLC, Mealiff Insurance and Financial Services, Rugby Insurance Agency, FNIC Group, AGI SureTrack, Jerome Village (owned and developed by Nationwide Realty Investors), Settlemyre Farms, Gallagher, ABIS, David Larson Financial and Insurance Services, Inc., Sump Saver, Ohio Corn and Wheat, NOHR Wortmann Engineering, and First Gabrielson Agency.

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