Making a difference: 60 fire crews get life-saving grain rescue tools from Nationwide
Nationwide's Grain Bin Safety campaign has awarded grain rescue tubes and training to 332 fire departments across 32 states
DES MOINES, Iowa - Rural communities continue to face hazards associated with working in and around grain structures. In 2022 alone, there were at least 42 grain entrapments – the highest number in over a decade – resulting in 15 fatalities1.
To help prevent tragic accidents and deaths, Nationwide and its partners are providing life-saving grain rescue tubes and training to 60 fire departments across rural America through its 2023 Grain Bin Safety campaign.
In partnership with the National Education Center for Agricultural Safety (NECAS), Nationwide and its partners have now supplied grain rescue equipment and training to 332 first responders across 32 states to help prepare them when local grain entrapments occur.
After receiving thousands of nominations in the 2023 Nominate Your Fire Department Contest, an annual component of Nationwide's Grain Bin Safety advocacy campaign, the insurer and its partners are proud to have awarded grain rescue tubes and training to the following 60 fire departments this year:A.B Shaw Fire Company, Claverack, NY
- Altamont Fire Protection District, Altamont, IL
- Ann Arundel County Fire & EMS Department, Millersville, MD
- Asbury Fire Protection District, Asbury, MO
- Bowman Rural Fire Department, Bowman, ND
- Burnett Fire Department, Burnett, WI
- Center Point Fire Department, Center Point, IA
- Chalybeate Volunteer Fire Department, Smiths Grove, KY
- Chase City Volunteer Fire Department, Chase City, VA
- Clarksburg Volunteer Fire Department, Clarksburg, IN
- Cobb Island Volunteer Fire & EMS Department, Cobb Island, MD
- Columbia/Adair County Volunteer Fire Department, Columbia, KY
- Conover Fire Department, Conover, NC
- Delmar Volunteer Fire Department, Delmar, DE
- District 2 Joint Volunteer Department, Crown City, OH
- Dunreith Volunteer Fire Department, Dunreith, IN
- Easton Volunteer Fire Department, Easton, MD
- Easton Volunteer Fire & Rescue, Easton, NY
- Fayette Fire Department, Seneca Falls, NY
- Fellows Club Volunteer Fire Department, Conneautville, PA
- Guntersville Volunteer Fire, Guntersville, AL
- Harrison Township Volunteer Fire Department, Monroe City, IN
- Hereford Volunteer Fire Company, Monkton, MD
- Hudson Volunteer Fire & Rescue, Hudson, IA
- Juniata Rural Fire, Juniata, NE
- Labette County Fire District #9, Parsons, KS
- Lakeville Fire Department, La Paz, IN
- LaPaz North Volunteer Fire Department, La Paz, IN
- Laytonsville District Volunteer Fire Department, Laytonsville, MD
- Lepanto Fire & Rescue, Lepanto, AR
- Linkwood-Salem Volunteer Fire Company, Linkwood, MD
- Longford Rural Fire District, Longford, KS
- Macomb Fire Department, Macomb, IL
- Mahantango Fire Department, Pitman, PA
- Marion Fire Department, Marion, MD
- Milton Fire Company, Milton, DE
- Minatare/Melbeta Fire Department, Minitare, NE
- Minden Volunteer Fire & Rescue, Minden, IA
- New Washington Volunteer Fire Department, New Washington, IN
- North Liberty Fire Department, North Liberty, IA
- Oakland Volunteer Fire Department, Oakland, MD
- Overisel Township Fire Department, Holland, MI
- Oxford Fire Department, Oxford, NC
- Perry County EMA Fire & Rescue – North Station, Leopold, IN
- Perry County EMA Fire & Rescue – South Station, Tell City, IN
- Poland Volunteer Fire Department, Poland, IN
- Pukwana Fire Department, Pukwana, SD
- Redding Township Volunteer Fire Department, Seymore, IN
- Reisterstown Fire Department, Reisterstown, MD
- Renville Fire Department, Renville, MN
- Ridgebury Fire Department, Gillett, PA
- Rutland Fire Department, Rutland, ND
- Singerly Fire Company, Elkton, MD
- Southern Area Fire & Emergency Rescue, Dallastown, PA
- Sugarcreek Township Fire Department, Dayton, OH
- Townsend Fire Company, Townsend, DE
- Valley Springs Fire, Valley Springs, SD
- Waterloo Fire Department, Waterloo, IL
- Wilson Township Volunteer Fire Department, Winona, MN
- Wyalusing Fire Department, Wyalusing, PA
- Bridgeville Volunteer Fire Company, Bridgeville, DE – re-training
- Funkstown Volunteer Fire Company, Funkstown, MD – re-training
- Guthrie Center Fire Department, Guthrie Center, IA – re-training
- Huntington County Fire Department, Huntington, IN – re-training
- Muncie Convention Center, Muncie, IN – re-training
- NY Corn & Soybean Expo, Seneca Falls, NY – re-training
"Grain bin accidents continue to be a critical issue facing the agriculture industry," said Brad Liggett, president of Agribusiness at Nationwide. "We are proud to have supplied these important resources to 60 more rural fire departments in partnership with the many sponsors involved in our grain bin safety efforts. However, the work will not be complete until we can put a stop to these needless accidents altogether. Thank you to the first responders who play such an important role in supporting the agriculture community."
NECAS, based out of Peosta, IA, delivered the rescue tubes and training to 60 fire departments and conducted re-training for six additional fire departments throughout 2023, traveling to each location with state-of-the-art grain entrapment simulators. The comprehensive training sessions included classroom education and rescue simulations using the entrapment tools, which are loaded onto 20-foot trailers and able to hold about 100 bushels of grain each.
Since beginning the Grain Bin Safety campaign in 2014, at least seven fire departments have utilized their rescue tubes and training to successfully rescue entrapped individuals, including a recent Ohio rescue of a worker trapped up to his armpits in March 2023.
"With entrapments and accidents on the rise, it's as important as ever to be following proper safety precautions before entering a bin," said Liggett. "Visit our Grain Bin Safety page to find educational resources and tools to help maintain grain quality and prevent accidents. Thank you to our generous partners who have supported this cause."
Nationwide is continuing to work with partners throughout the year to provide additional grain rescue tubes and training sessions to fire departments in need. To learn how to get involved or sponsor a rescue tube for your local fire department, visit the Partner With Us webpage.
The program is supported by Nationwide, NECAS and the following generous partners:
- KC Supply, Indiana Corn Marketing Council, Maryland Soy Board, Horizon Farm Credit, Maryland Grain Producers, Specialty Risk Insurance, Lutz Agency Inc., Bradford County Commissioners, Delaware Soybean Board, ProValue Insurance LLC, CHS, New York Farm Bureau, Perry County Farm Bureau, West Side Salvage, Delaware Farm Bureau, Kelly Jones Insurance Agency, Gary Thompson Agency, Gregerson Salvage, Inc., GROWMARK, Farm Creek Insurance, The Pegram Agency, Washington County Soil & Water District, HTS Ag, Maryland Farm Bureau, Ohio Farm Bureau, Sandy Oakley & Family, Gallagher, ABIS/Assured Partners, Sump Saver, NOHR Wortmann Engineering, IRMI, D. Larson Financial & Insurance Services.
Nationwide, a Fortune 100 company based in Columbus, Ohio, is one of the largest and strongest diversified insurance and financial services organizations in the United States. Nationwide is rated A+ by both A.M. Best and Standard & Poor's. An industry leader in driving customer-focused innovation, Nationwide provides a full range of insurance and financial services products including auto, business, homeowners, farm and life insurance; public and private sector retirement plans, annuities, mutual funds and EFTs; excess & surplus, specialty and surety; and pet, motorcycle and boat insurance.
1 Source: 2022 Summary of U.S. Agricultural Confined Space-Related Injuries and Fatalities (May 2023)