Fire-Rescue assists in Orangeburg silo rescue
by The Press and Standard | August 1, 2019 5:00 pm
Last Updated: July 31, 2019 at 9:27 am
Four members of Colleton County Fire-Rescue answered the call for assistance July 24 as Orangeburg safety forces spent the day rescuing a man trapped in a grain silo.
Colleton County Fire-Rescue Chief Barry McRoy said Fire-Rescue responded to the Orangeburg Department of Public Safety mutual aid call with four local firefighters who had training and experience in confined space rescues.
“They had all the equipment they needed,” McRoy said. What Orangeburg needed were personnel to spell their officers during the tedious rescue process. Lexington County also sent firefighters to the scene to assist in the rescue.
The local officers, McRoy said, arrived at the Cactus Family Farms about noon. The rescue began about 9 a.m.; the man was successfully removed from the corn silo and transported to an Orangeburg medical facility shortly before 6 p.m.
McRoy said that he was told the man was wearing a safety harness while working on the silo when he fell into the corn.
He reportedly sunk into the corn up to his nose. A second man at the farm went into the silo to try and extricate the man but his legs became entrapped in the corn.
Rescuers, using special interlocking panels, constructed a wall around the man. The much of the corn in the silo constrained by the wall. Firefighters and farm employees put together a vacuum to remove the corn that entrapped the man.
McRoy said while the county’s fire department has members specially trained in confined space rescues, someone trapped in a grain silo is a rarity. Since 1994, Colleton County Fire-Rescue has only handled one grain silo rescue.