By the time Matt McNutt and Shane Floyd arrived on the scene, it was almost dark. The farm worker the firefighters were in route to rescue had been stuck inside a grain bin for almost two hours, and his luck was running out by the minute.
“When I got there, the gentleman was buried about armpit deep,” McNutt said. “As he talked and squirmed, he ended up being chin to forehead dip with only a portion of his arm from his elbow to his fingertips sticking out. There was another gentleman in the bin with him and he was keeping his face clear of corn.”
McNutt and Floyd knew the scene could play out in a heartbeat. Every year, lives are tragically lost in grain bin accidents. This is why the Mississippi Farm Bureau Federation developed a grain bin safety class to train farm workers and first responders on what to do in rescue situations. Thankfully, the two firefighters took the class several years ago, and were able to rely on knowledge learned to save the farm worker.
“Three or four years ago, we actually had several of these trainings in Cleveland and Indianola,” Floyd said.
“We never thought we would ever use it,” McNutt said. “But as soon as that call came out as an entrapment in a grain bin, all I could think of was what we had learned three years ago. We were lucky to have had that knowledge.”
When McNutt and Floyd received the emergency call at 4:12 p.m. They were able to drive away after a successful rescue at 9 p.m.
“Rumor is that he had been trapped since 2 p.m. and the other workers were trying to pull them out themselves,” McNutt said. “Time is of the essence. I honestly feel like if everything had not taken place like it did with our time, the outcome could’ve been very different. Always call trained help.”
Mississippi Farm Bureau safety specialists, John Hubbard and Benton Moseley, travel across Mississippi and the Southeast performing dozens of training seminars each year, including the grain bin safety class.
To schedule the grain bin safety training in your county, please call our safety department at 601-977-4242.