Greenup Man Dies in Grain Bin Collapse

A Greenup man died Thursday after the top of a grain bin he was working near collapsed, burying him amid the flow of escaping corn.

Cumberland County Coroner Steve Sherwood identified the man as Roger Swim, 64.

“No matter how much training you do, it’s never going to be the same situation,” Toledo Fire Chief Chuck Layton said. In this case, the unique aspect stemmed from the recovery taking place outside the bin, where emergency crews had to deal with the continuing flow of grain from the damaged structure to the ground below.

“It’s so stressful,” Layton said of the process, which was aided by a gamut of emergency personnel, as well as government agencies and neighboring farmers that provided the necessary digging equipment.

Layton said his department was dispatched around 2:30 p.m. to the Ervin Farm on the north side of Toledo to a report of a person trapped in the grain.

Layton said a passerby heard the collapse, which sounded like a truckload of metal passing by, and saw the plume of grain dust.

Layton said the “sudden collapse” occurred while corn was being removed from the bin. He said a second worker, who was in the area when the bin collapsed, was able to get himself free and direct emergency crews where to search for Swim.

Layton said 44 minutes passed from the time his department received the call and Swim was located.

Layton said it was unclear what caused the collapse and that his department wouldn’t be doing any additional investigation.

Layton said assistance was provided by the Greenup, Sigel, Lincoln and Neoga fire departments.

By Scott Perry