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Feed mill worker dies in grain bin.

New York State Department of Health/Health Research Incorporated
Morgantown, WV: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, FACE 02NY012, 2002 Oct; :1-7
On March 15th, 2002, a 41 year-old male feed mill worker died from asphyxiation as a result of entrapment and submersion in flaked corn. The victim had been filling a hopper bottom grain bin with steamed flaked corn on the day of the incident. It appears that as the bin became full, the worker went into the top of the bin to level the corn as an attempt to store the remaining corn. As the worker was standing on the corn surface, a subterraneous bridged pocket apparently gave way, allowing the victim to become entrapped in the flowing corn. His body became submerged and he was unable to breathe. The victim's wife became concerned when he did not return from work, and she then contacted both the feed mill and the emergency responders. A coworker discovered the victim entrapped in the grain bin. The victim had worked for this mill for the past 20 years. New York State Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) investigators concluded that to help prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future, employers should: 1. Develop a comprehensive safety program that clearly documents procedures for safe entry into confined spaces, such as grain bins. This program should include, but should not be limited to: 2. Provision of at least one attendant, responsible for maintaining constant communication with the entrant, outside the confined space for the duration of entry operations; 3. Equipping confined spaces, such as grain bins, that contain unstable materials, with lifelines and harnesses at their entrance point(s) and training workers in their usage; 4. Strictly prohibiting workers from standing on or working from the surface of loose, granular materials, even when the surface appears stable. 5. Evaluate grain bins and storage facilities for retrofitting with mechanical fill level devices to minimize the need to enter grain storage bins; 6. Post signs at entrances to confined spaces, such as grain bins, that contain stored material, warning of potential dangers and safety requirements for entering confined spaces.
Region-2; Accident-analysis; Accident-prevention; Accidents; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Traumatic-injuries; Work-operations; Work-analysis; Work-areas; Work-performance; Work-practices; Safety-education; Safety-equipment; Safety-measures; Safety-monitoring; Safety-programs; Training; Warning-signs; Confined-spaces; Personal-protection; Personal-protective-equipment; Protective-equipment
Publication Date
Document Type
Field Studies; Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation
Funding Type
Cooperative Agreement
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
FACE-02NY012; Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-CCU-220784
SIC Code
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
New York State Department of Health/Health Research Incorporated
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division