Special Rescue Team Frees Man from Grain Silo

- WASHINGTON COUNTY, Md. -  Special operations teams were called in from Washington, Frederick, Franklin and Jefferson counties to save a man who became trapped inside a grain silo. At one point officials say he was buried from the chest down.

Even as the sun went down, the team worked through the dropping temperatures. Washington County Sheriff Doug Mullendore said, "It's a very slow and arduous process."

Finally, after five hours of intensive labor their rescue efforts paid off.

Sheriff Mullendore said, "He actually was able to walk out on his own so he's in pretty good shape."

The man was transported to Meritus Medical Center to get checked out, but officials believe the man will be just fine.

Rescue officials say the incident happened while the man was working inside the silo filled with corn grains when he accidentally fell in.

Two other men went in after him to try and help, but that backfired and they also became trapped.

That's when the special operations team was called in. Rescuers say it wasn't an easy task.

"You're trying to overcome the obstacle of the corn having its own motion and moving down every time you move it, and not stepping in the wrong spot, and getting yourself engulfed as well," said Adam Hopkins, Washington County Special Operations.

Rescuers also say they had to use a number of different approaches to save the man. The approach that worked involved creating a wall around the man and sucking the grains out from there.

"Initially we were digging corn up with small shovels getting them up around them and then as the vacuum truck got here we transitioned that operation," said Hopkins. We had EMS personnel inside the entire time."

They also had a state police helicopter in case the trapped man suffered serious injuries, but in the end, rescuers were able to successfully free the man who was able to walk himself out of the silo and into an ambulance.

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