Using Fault Tree Analysis to Identify Contributing Factors to Engulfment in Flowing Grain in On-Farm Grain Bins

Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
  • Field, William E.;
  • Kingman, Douglas M.


Findings reported by researchers at Illinois State University and Purdue University indicated that since 1980, an average of eight individuals per year have become engulfed and died in farm grain bins in the U.S. and Canada and that all these deaths are significant because they are believed to be preventable. During a recent effort to develop intervention strategies and recommendations for an ASABE farm grain bin safety standard, fault tree analysis (FTA) was utilized to identify contributing factors to engulfments in grain stored in on-farm grain bins. FTA diagrams provided a spatial perspective of the circumstances that occurred prior to engulfment incidents, a perspective never before presented in other hazard analyses. The FTA also demonstrated relationships and interrelationships of the contributing factors. FTA is a useful tool that should be applied more often in agricultural incident investigations to assist in the more complete understanding of the problem studied.

Full article can be found in: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Access this publication at: ASABE Technical Library

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