Category Archives: Farm Safety

New App Could Be A Life-Saving Tool On The Farm

There have been more than 900 grain-bin entrapment deaths nationwide since 1964, according to data compiled by Purdue University’s Agricultural Safety and Health Program. Illinois had 10 grain entrapments in 2010 alone. Now there is a new app that’s helping to ensure a grain rescue tube can always be located. The Illinois Grain Rescue Tube Locator app uses a GPS system to locate the nearest grain rescue tube in relevance to your location, a key component when saving farm workers from drowning in grain filled storage bins. In other words it will tell you which fire department or rescue team nearest you has a grain rescue tube. For those not familiar with a “grain rescue tube,” it’s generally a 5 foot-tall aluminum cylinder that comes in four curved pieces. Firefighters or rescuers place each piece of the tube carefully around a victim who has fallen into a grain bin. They then latch the tube together to help prevent more grain from pushing up against the victim. The rescuers then begin to scoop the grain out of the tube, helping to give the victim more room to breath. These tubes have been used to save numerous lives since they were first introduced about 8 years ago. Now you can track down the nearest tube with just the click of a button. Remember, about 40% of last year’s 33 grain entrapments across the country ended in death. Meaning response time is critical. Currently the app only maps the location of available grain safety tubes in Illinois. The Illinois Corn Marketing Board, together with the Grain and Feed Association of Illinois (creators of the app) are urging other states to consider investing in similar life saving tools. Check out this video preview of the App in action. The actual app is available for download in the iTunes and Google Play stores.