Firefighters train for farm-related rescues

The LeRoy-Rose Lake Fire Department was one of six department's at this weekend's ag-rescue training.

OSCEOLA COUNTY, Mich., (WPBN/WGTU) -- Some northern Michigan firefighters spent their weekend at the farm.

Six fire departments participated in an agriculture rescue training course at Gingrich Meadows Dairy Farm this weekend to help prepare for emergencies at farms.

"They’re not super common," said LeRoy-Rose Lake Fire Captain Dale Hall. "As a county, we’re maybe called out to incidents at a farm maybe once a year. The problem is when we do get these incidents, there’s a pretty high potential for them to be very serious, time consuming, manpower consuming.”

Sunday's hands-on portion of the training included three different segments: rescuing someone stuck in a grain or sawmill, rescuing someone from under an overturned tractor and rescuing someone whose limb was stuck in machinery.

Eric Martin, whose family owns Gingrich Meadows, says they've never had an emergency that he can recall, but he knows the dangers involved with work on farms

"We actually really appreciate all these different fire departments coming out and learning all these ag-rescue situations," Martin said. "It’s really good that they come out, hone their skills, because these are situations that could save someone’s life some day."

Captain Hall says the training helps them identify what equipment they may need to add to their arsenal, and also helps improve their communication skills should an emergency ever arise.

He says the equipment used in the training for farm rescues can also be put to use when his department responds to incidents involving machinery anywhere or car crashes.

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