6/4/2008 – At 2:34pm the Sussex Co EOC alerted Sta.74 Delmar for a subject trapped at the Allen’s Feed Mill north of town. Crews arrived to find a group of Allen’s workers digging at a pile of soybeans. Reports came in as a worker who was changing out a motor on one of the silo’s became trapped after the soybeans inside the silo rushed out and buried the worker and a fork lift under about 15 feet of grain.
The Sussex County Technical Rescue Team was dispatched to the scene. This brought specially trained personal that have been trained in these types of rescues. Crews started to try and dig down to the subject but soybeans kept filling in the area that they were working in. Rescue workers had to close the hole in the side of the silo to keep the soybeans from pouring out. They used many sheets of plywood held in place by a back-hoe to cover the hole. Crews were able to locate the victim and tied a rescue rope to him. Special vacuum trucks were used to suck the grain away from the area.
74 Command was advised of heavy storms moving in the area in about 40 minutes. These storms were producing hail, heavy rain and 50 mph winds. Crews went to work to recover the 46 year old male victim before the storms moved in.
After 2 ½ hours, crews were able to pull the lifeless victim out from the soybeans were he was transferred to an awaiting ambulance.
The Delaware State Police was on scene and conducting an investigation to the cause of the accident.
Everyone and all the departments worked very well together and as a team during this very difficult rescue.
Rescue-74, Engine 74-1, Engine 74-3, Paramedic A-74, Sussex County Technical Team, Trooper-2, Sta.90 Roxanna Rehab and the Delaware State Police.