Ag Rescue Training Coming Your Way

The Agriculture Rescue Training program is sharing the word about farm safety and the hazards that emergency responders might face.

Agriculture Rescue Training, or ART, will be held Oct. 20-21, in Marshfield. Registration is open on the website. In its third year, the training connects emergency personnel with the emergencies they may face on farms or other agricultural sites.

Emergency responders face unique, high-risk situations on farms, including toxic atmospheres, enclosed spaces, managing animals under stress and machinery entrapments. That is why the National Farm Medicine Center, in partnership with Pittsville Fire Company, Life Link III, Heiman’s Holsteins, Heeg Farms Inc., and Marshfield Clinic Health System, is putting on the training, which is designed to supplement basic emergency training.

New to ART this year is large animal rescue. This workshop will provide multiple skills and techniques to safely contain, approach and manipulate downed large animals in emergency situations. It will also provide techniques to manage animals in more complicated situations.

Last year, organizers began offering a one-day separate train-the-trainer program so participants could take the training model to their communities.

“It’s beyond just the training in Marshfield, it’s spreading its wings and growing,” said ART coordinator Kyle Koshalek, a project manager at National Farm Medicine Center, which helps host the annual event in Marshfield. Folks from around the country and Canada are interested in attending, he said, to expand the training beyond Wisconsin’s borders. In addition, the U.S. Army Urban Search and Rescue School are also interested in attending this year, he said.

“Rural communities see these kinds of things,” Koshalek said, such as tractor rollovers and equipment extraction. ART has trained more than 214 attendees in two years with 89 departments represented. After the first year, participants began asking about training they could take back to their departments. “A lot of departments have their own training instructors,” he said.