grain bin 1022715 1280KANKAKEE – To prevent fatalities on the farm during the busy harvest season, Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) is joining officials in reminding farmers and farm workers to be cautious when working in and around grain bins.

“When a farmer falls into a grain bin and gets trapped, it can become a life-threatening emergency,” Joyce said. “Farmers are not fast enough to get out of flowing grain so it’s important to set aside time to go over safety measures and prepare farmers for a potential grain bin emergency.”

While essential to Illinois’ harvests, grain handling equipment and storage containers can quickly become deadly. In fact, Illinois reported the most incidents involving agricultural confined spaces, including grain bins, in 2020.

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, a worker standing on moving grain will be trapped within just five seconds and completely covered in grain in less than half a minute.

OSHA details the three most common scenarios leading to grain entrapment:

  • A worker stands on moving or flowing grain, typically caused by an auger running or grain being moved out of the bin by gravity.
  • A worker stands on or below a grain bridging situation. Bridging happens when damp grain clumps together, creating an empty space beneath the grain as it is unloaded. A worker above or below this bridge of grain is at risk should the bridge collapse.
  • A worker stands next to an accumulated pile of grain on the side of the bin and attempts to dislodge it. It can collapse onto the worker.

While workers should avoid entering grain bins if possible, safety measures can greatly diminish the risk if they must enter. To learn safety tips and find additional information to stay safe during harvest, click here

Category: Press Releases

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Springfield Office:
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