Grain elevator collapses with 150,000 bushels of wheat inside

EDWALL, Wash. --- A grain elevator bin collapsed in Edwall, temporarily knocking out power to the area and warping a section of a nearby railway track.

The grain bin collapsed around 1 a.m. Wednesday morning with about 150,000 bushels of wheat in it.

The bin, owned by Ritzville Warehouse Co., was holding harvested wheat.

No employees or customers were at the site when the bin collapsed.

Avista said their crews responded to the scene and was there until about 5 a.m. Wednesday morning. Avista officials said the collapse briefly affected their service line.

“Customers in Edwall and Reardan could’ve seen their lights flicker,” said David Vowels from Avista. “But their service wasn’t disrupted for too long.”

The collapse also took out part of a BSNF rail siding that goes through the area, but should not impact the main line traffic, Ritzville Warehouse officials said.

“There were trains using the main line track today,” said Stacey Hunt, the grain division manager. “So there’s not a stoppage there.”

Hunt said they were expecting the damage to be about $1 million.

“The insurance company will be doing their own investigation about why the bin failed,” Hunt said.

Hunt explained they would have a salvage company take a look at the bin, to see what they could save.

Avista said there appeared to be a smoldering fire when they arrived on the scene.

“Probably as a result of coming into contact with our service line,” Vowels said.

© 2017 KREM-TV


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