The Grain industry, OSHA, and grain safety organizations made an all-out effort this week to raise awareness of the fatal hazards of grain bins. Grain engulfment claims many lives annually, primarily on farms where federal labor laws do not extend. Stu Ellis provides details on the national education campaign for grain bin safety.
OSHA’s acting assistant secretary is Loren Sweatt, who outlined the latest data about fatalities in grain bins…
According to the latest data from Purdue University there were 23 documented grain engulfments in 2017 that resulted in 11 fatalities. Suffocation is a leading cause of death in grain storage bins. A matter of seconds is all it takes for flowing grain to engulf and trap a worker based on the average flow rate for grain a 6 foot tall worker can be covered in just 11 seconds.
University of Illinois farm safety specialist Bob Aherin has been a leader in the national educational campaign for grain safety awareness.
We just try to encourage farmers to help people be aware of the risk of grain engulfment; entanglement in augers which is a big problem in grain as well; and also falls, off our structures particularly.
As an academic, what grade would you give farmers about their awareness of grain bin safety, and about their practice of grain bin safety.
Well, you put them both together, awareness may be a B, but practice is probably more of a C, ha, ha, unfortunately, because we see too many farmers relying upon their past experience of going in bins, climbing over augers which are unguarded. And they do that because they have gotten by.
That’s our report from the Farm on grain safety week. This is Stu Ellis with WCIA3 your local news leader.