Crews rescue person trapped in grain silo in Mint Hill, fire officials say

MINT HILL, N.C. — Chopper 9 Skyzoom was overhead when crews rescued a man trapped in a grain silo in Mint Hill Wednesday morning.

Several fire crews responded to the scene on Arlington Church Road. Firefighters could also be seen on top of a silo with ladders working to get the man out. Fire officials said the grain was up to the his chest.

The Mint Hill Fire Department told Channel 9 that Tommy Houston was trying to break up an air pocket when he got stuck. They said Houston’s brother tried to free him, but when he couldn’t, he called 911.

Fire Chief David Leath said they had to be very strategic about the rescue.

“We have to be careful when we get into these situations. One wrong move and ... he’d have been buried,” Leath said.

Firefighters strapped a harness around Houston and dug out the soybeans around him. They did that while standing on plywood so they wouldn’t sink themselves.

MEDIC said Houston was trapped for more than 40 minutes before crews were able to get him out just after 11:30 a.m. Leath said he was alert when they pulled him out, but Houston was still taken to a hospital to be checked.

His daughter said she’s glad he’s back on solid ground.

“It was terrifying. I mean, I was at work doing my thing, and of course my mind races to the worst possible outcome. So I’m just extremely relieved and thankful,” Amy Dutch said.

No other information has been released at this point.

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