Silos are a common fixture in farms across the country. Most of us know them to be a practical way to store grain through the seasons. Some of us even view them as a thing of beauty. But many of us aren’t aware of the hidden dangers buried in a silo.
Silo accidents are all too common. If a silo’s contents are not properly secured, they can dislodge and create a veritable avalanche effect – burying anyone in its path. When such accidents occur, death is almost unavoidable. It takes just eight seconds for a victim to suffocate in such conditions.
A recent tragedy in Van Buren County highlights this very real danger.
Silage collapse kills father of two
John Garth Cummings was a 35-year-old contractor. His company had assigned him to conduct tests at a dairy farm near Hartford. While there, a 30-foot stack of corn silage broke loose and engulfed Cummings. A co-worker dug him out and attempted to resuscitate him, but his efforts were unsuccessful. Cummings was taken to nearby Watervliet Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Attorney Brian J. McKeen has taken on the case and is pursuing civil justice on behalf of the Cummings family.
The dangers of silage
Silage is a type of animal feed made from green foliage crops, which is fermented and used to feed farm animals through the winter. Because of its high-moisture content, silage is extremely dense and heavy. This is part of what makes silage collapses so dangerous.
Silage-related accidents occur all too frequently. Employers have a duty to take precautions to help prevent crush injuries and suffocation. If your family has suffered due to a silage or other farm-related accident, consulting with a farm accident attorney can help you understand your rights to compensation.