Nationwide has announced it will award 58 fire departments – two in the Quad City area – across the country with life-saving grain rescue tubes and hands-on training to help prevent grain entrapment deaths in rural communities.

The Atalissa Volunteer Fire Department and the Cordova Fire Protection District are among the organizations that will receive these resources in 2022., a news release says.

Grain bin accidents send shock waves through rural communities as farmers and grain handlers know all too well how quickly entering a grain bin can turn deadly, a news release from Nationwide says To help prevent these accidents that result in dozens of lives lost each year, Nationwide is providing life-saving resources to rural America’s first responders.

In partnership with the National Education Center for Agricultural Safety (NECAS), Nationwide is awarding 58 fire departments across the country with grain rescue tubes and hands-on training to prepare them to respond when local grain entrapments occur.

After receiving more than 1,800 nominations across 45 states in the annual Nominate Your Fire Department Contest, a key piece of Nationwide’s Grain Bin Safety advocacy campaign, the insurer and its partners will make the awards.

“We are proud to provide first responders the education and resources to lead the fight against local grain bin entrapments,” said Brad Liggett, president of Agribusiness at Nationwide. “It’s been our mission to bring an end to this industry issue by raising awareness of the dangers and suppling needed equipment to the front line rescuers tasked with responding when accidents occur.”

NECAS, based out of Peosta, IA, will deliver the rescue tubes and training to the winning fire departments throughout 2022, traveling to each location with state-of-the-art grain entrapment simulators and rescue tubes. The comprehensive training sessions include 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. 

With 2022 donations included, Nationwide and partners have supplied these resources to 265 departments across 31 states. At least five fire departments have utilized their rescue tubes and training to successfully rescue entrapped workers.

“It’s as important as ever to be following proper safety precautions when entering a bin,” said Liggett. “Our goal is to continue these efforts until we can ensure every rural fire department has access to these critical rescue resources.”

Nationwide is continuing to work with partners throughout 2022 to provide additional grain rescue tubes and training sessions to fire departments in need, the release says. To learn how to get involved and sponsor a rescue tube for your local fire department, visit here.

About Nationwide

Nationwide, a Fortune 100 company based in Columbus, Ohio, is one of the largest diversified insurance and financial services organizations in the United States.