Farm Silo Fire and Emergency Training

Forage silos are commonly found in dairy and beef cattle operations. These structures have long been the sentinel of rural America and can now stand over 140 feet tall. While many people, responders included, just see a “silo”, there are different types and designs that require unique and sometimes very drastic differences in the management of fires or rescues. Because these fires or other emergencies are rare, many responders may not be aware of the differences and inherent dangers involved with operations in these structures. Not understanding the differences can lead to disastrous outcomes and have led to firefighter deaths. 

Farm Silo Fire and Emergency Awareness (.pdf) (4 hours) 

This program is intended to provide a basic overview of the types of silos and the hazards, dangers, and initial best practices for emergency response to incidents involving these structures. The simple premise of this program can be summed up as “what to do or not do in the first few minutes of a silo incident so that nothing blows up (it can happen) and no one gets hurt or killed.” 

This program is not intended to teach specific and in-depth fire/rescue management tactics which would include additional extensive training and understanding. However, the program will provide information on where to obtain additional training and technical advice for these types of incidents. 

Farm Silo Fire Operations (.pdf) (4 hours – Combine with Awareness for 8 hours)  

The operations level program includes more in-depth discussion and demonstration of initial basic silo firefighting tactics. This class includes a visit to a local farm operation to view silos and review response considerations.

Course Disclaimer
Like any other emergency response, every individual silo fire is its own incident and can be completely different from any other similar incident you have responded to in the past. The tactics described in this program are considered first-step best practices. If in doubt, ask lots of questions before doing anything!