DORCHESTER COUNTY, S.C. (WCBD) – Dorchester County emergency crews now have additional equipment to assist with grain bin accidents.

The Dorchester County Farm Bureau recently donated grain bin rescue equipment to Dorchester County Fire Rescue, which county leaders said marks a significant step forward in ensuring the safety of farmers and first responders.

County officials say grain bin accidents are a serious concern in agricultural communities, and the addition of the specialized equipment will enhance the department’s ability to respond to these types of emergencies.

All employees and volunteers were provided training by Clemson University Agricultural Sciences Department and the Clemson Extension Service. The training allows crews to safely – and realistically – train in a live grain environment.

“On behalf of Dorchester County Fire Rescue, I’d like to thank Dorchester County Farm Bureau for their contribution of $5,000 as well as their efforts to secure an additional $2,000 from their industry partners. We also appreciate Hutto Ace Hardware for their donation of hand tools for our use in this effort,” said Dorchester County Fire Chief Tres Atkinson. “This equipment will undoubtedly make a significant difference in our ability to respond to emergencies quickly and effectively, and we are deeply grateful to all of our partners for their support.”

County officials say the primary grain rescue equipment will be staged at Rescue 424 at the Indian Field Station which will allow rapid response to accidents in areas where the majority of grain bins are located.

Additional equipment will be housed in Reevesville and Grover stations.