"The rescue tube will not only benefit our department, but we will also notify other departments in our rural area that we have the tube and that they can request from us when needed," said Kevin Peterson, fire chief for the Maple Park and Countryside, Illinois, Fire Protection District, a rural community approximately 60 miles west of Chicago.
Grain entrapments, although uncommon, occur when workers become trapped in bins and silos used to store corn, grain or other material. The intense pressure of large volumes of grain within the silo not only makes it difficult for the trapped worker to breathe, but also hampers rescue workers' ability to pull the victim to safety.
Grain rescue tubes are used to assist people trapped in grain silos. The tubes are pushed down into the grain and are designed to act as a containment barrier or temporary wall around people who are partially buried within the silos. The tubes permit rescue workers to remove the grain immediately surrounding the victim.
Along with Maple Park, Corn Products will donate rescue tubes to fire departments in Cardinal, London and Port Colborne, Ontario, all of which are home to Corn Products facilities.
The donation is part of Corn Products' ongoing commitment to safety; in addition, the company has sent letters to its corn suppliers reminding them of the importance of safety and asking them to ensure that safe practices are implemented throughout the supply chain.
"Corn Products International is concerned about the safety of both our employees and the people who work with us," said Hugh Parker, director, commodity purchasing at Corn Products. "The farmers and grain elevator systems of North America do more than supply the raw materials we use to create our ingredients. They are a vital part of our continent's economy, and we are happy to help in any way we can to make life a little safer for the people who help put food on our tables."