Farm Rescue Training

Emergency service workers may be called to aid a person that has become injured in farm-related emergency. The outcome of the injured victim is often dependant on care given.
Farm Rescue Training - Articles


The golden hour is often long past by the time help arrives on the scene. Rescue personnel are sometimes injured or even killed because of their unfamiliarity with farm machines, structures and animals.

PAgricultural Rescue Training is designed to help local emergency services develop strategies and procedures to be better prepared to respond to and manage on-farm emergencies. With this accomplished, better care will be provided for the victim. The better the care that is provided, the better the chances of survival.

About the Program

In areas where agriculture is an important industry, a variety of emergencies and disasters can occur. These range from trauma events or fires where emergency services disciplines are summoned; to zoonotic diseases where public and private health professionals come together; to disasters where farm animals are affected and multiple agencies and trained volunteers may respond side by side.

Agricultural emergencies require responders to have specialized knowledge and skills to help their community prevent and protect against various emergencies and disasters and to effectively and safely respond to, manage and help in the recovery of, these varied emergencies. The more exposure responders have to agricultural situations, the more comfortable they will become in their role as an agricultural responder.

Many of the disasters or emergencies may occur naturally such as floods, fires, explosions, or storm damage, and some may occur as intentional acts of terrorism, including diseases, chemicals, biological agents, radiologic or nuclear events, or explosions. Locating specialized resources and training for this wide range of topics is difficult. These courses bring this specialized training and lists of resources together in one training event.

Recognizing the critical importance that agriculture and food production plays to the US infrastructure, Homeland Security Presidential Directive/HSPD-9 was established and signed into law in January 2004. This directive establishes a national policy to defend the agriculture and food system against terrorist attacks, major disasters, and other emergencies. Our training programs are designed to help prepare local responders to be more knowledgeable of farm emergencies and more effective in their agricultural response activities.

Homeland Security Approved Training

Penn State has been approved by Homeland Security to conduct three classes related to Agricultural Emergencies, enabling jurisdictions to utilize Homeland Security Grant Program (HSGP) funding sources to cover the cost of delivering these trainings in their regions. This funding which is distributed to states from DHS/FEMA is intended to support counter terrorism and emergency preparedness initiatives. Specifically HSGP funding is used to prevent, protect against, respond to and recover from terrorist attacks and other disasters. Interested parties should contact their county EMA for information on how this program works in their region. The descriptions of the three courses are as follows:

Program Goals

The PAgricultural Rescue Training Program at Penn State is concerned with developing and delivering training programs that will:

  • Help emergency personnel become aware of the many hazards that they will face while managing an agricultural emergency.
  • Help emergency personnel understand the importance of pre-planning for various farm emergencies in their communities.
  • Help fire, EMS and CART units specialize in various aspects of ag rescue (i.e., machinery, chemicals, animals or confined spaces) and become technically competent in at least one of these areas.
  • Encourage teamwork between fire, EMS and CART interests for effective agricultural rescue strategies that will result in higher quality pre-hospital patient care and animal response.
  • Teach emergency responders to be proficient within their area of expertise (fire, rescue, EMS, CART) while managing farm emergencies.