Wheatland fire departments get grain rescue training and equipment

The Canadian Press

STRATHMORE – Firefighters in Wheatland County will be better able to respond to emergencies in grain silos, following a training course last Sunday.

Wheatland County Fire Services took part in BeGrainSafe, the Canadian Agricultural Safety Association’s (CASA) grain safety program. Through a two-day training program, Wheatland firefighters learned how to safely extract a person trapped in grain, using a cofferdam and auger.

To be able to respond to such a scenario, CASA and Canadian grain company G3 awarded grain rescue equipment to the county fire services, specifically a GSI RES-Q-TUBE and a Haul-ALL pencil auger, which are essential in rescuing a grain entrapment victim. The rescue tube creates a barrier between the victim and the grain, while the auger extracts grain away from them.

The training and equipment means Wheatland Fire Services is ready to respond to grain entrapment emergencies throughout the county, said Tom Jukes, Wheatland County deputy regional fire chief.

“It’s a high risk in the county – we have a lot of farmers – so we want to make sure that if there is an incident, our firefighters are ready and available,” he said. “We’re fortunate that we are going to have the equipment and capabilities for that rescue.”

By Sean Feagan, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter/Strathmore Times

Members of the Wheatland Fire Department conduct grain rescue training at the Wheatland County Operations Centre on Oct. 18. (Sean Feagan, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter)

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