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Grain Safety – Stay Safe with Gateway

Farm safety is a crucial element of modern agriculture, and grain bin entrapment is one of the biggest hazards on today’s farms. Take a look at the information below and our Gateway team will help you to stay informed on grain safety throughout the year.

The grain handling industry is a high-hazard industry where workers are exposed to serious, life-threatening risks, every day. Potential dangers include fires and explosions from grain dust accumulation, entrapment inside of grain bins, serious physical injury from grain handling equipment, and falls from the high bin elevation – require vigilant understanding to prevent catastrophic results for workers health and well-being.

On average, nearly two dozen people are killed each year in the U.S. in grain handling incidents. Flowing grain is dangerous and accounts for roughly 80% of human engulfment’s in the industry. As grain is unloaded, the grain flow that results acts similar to quicksand. It can take less than 5 seconds for an adult to be fully buried, resulting in suffocation.

Other than flowing grain, there are other grain hazards to be aware of:

  • Bridged grain– spoiled grain can clump on the top surface, appearing solid but hiding open voids that can collapse under a person’s weight
  • Vertical grain wall avalanche– spoiled grain can clump on the walls, sometimes breaking loose and burying anyone inside
  • Grain vacuums– An operator can be pulled into the downward flow of grain 

Grain bin safety precautions to prevent incidents:

  • Manage grain to prevent spoilage by maintaining proper aeration and fixing roof leaks.
  • Work from the outside of the bin, using a pole to knock grain clumps free.
  • Visually inspect the grain bin before entering, use the appropriate equipment, and never enter a bin alone.

Overall, creating a safe environment with proper training for employees and having a rescue plan in place in case of emergency is paramount to the success and safety of your farming operation.

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