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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 200050789 - Employee'S Arm Amputated In Grain Bin Auger

Accident: 200050789 -- Report ID: 0728900 -- Event Date: 09/01/1999
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
30005637109/10/19995153Coleridge Elevator Co
Employee #1 was off loading cattle feed grain from a bin at the grain co-op into a truck to be distributed to local farmers. The grain was typically transported from the bins to the trucks by a drag system that used an auger in a U-trough. Shortly after the process began, the grain flow fluctuated, slowed down, then returned to normal. This usually was an indication that the drag was starting to clog. The driver of the truck was monitoring the level of the grain in his trailer, approximately 35 ft from the bin. Employee #1 was running the drag from the control house next to the truck loading area, approximately 25 ft from the bin. Shortly after the fluctuation started, the flow of grain stopped completely. Employee #1 went to the bottom of the grain bin, saw that the auger trough was clogged, and told the truck driver that he needed to clear the drag. He had previously worked out a system with the truck driver for unclogging the drag. The truck driver was to run the drag for 5 seconds, then he would stop and Employee #1 would poke a stick into the grain to loosen up the material. The truck driver would then run the drag again to move the loosened grain. They did this for approximately 5 minutes when Employee #1's stick broke. After finding another stick, Employee #1 indicated he was ready to resume the same procedure. When they started back to work, however, they were not on the same run/stop rhythm. Employee #1 inserted his arm to knock loose the grain at the same time that the truck driver turned on the drag. The auger caught Employee #1's right arm, amputating it below the elbow. He crawled approximately 10 ft out from under the bin and the truck driver helped him to the office, approximately 100 ft from the accident scene. The owner then took Employee #1 to the paramedics across the street and he was flown 60 miles to a hospital in Sioux City, IA.
Keywords: amputated, work rules, clogged, auger, extension handle, off loading, arm, communication, grain bin, unguarded
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 300056371 Hospitalized injury Amputation Occupation not reported

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