Chopper

A LifeNet medical helicopter prepares to take off on Friday afternoon after an incident at CargillAg in the area of Cummings, Kansas.

CUMMINGS, Kan. — A man is fighting for his life after an apparent accident at an agriculture plant outside Atchison, Kansas, electrocuted one of his co-workers and caused the surviving man serious injuries as the two worked inside a grain storage area.

Atchison County Emergency Management director Wes Lanter said that the two workers, who are private contractors doing business with the CargillAg plant located along the northwest side of U.S. Highway 59 in the area of Cummings, Kansas, suffered the injuries late Friday morning.

“They suffered (an electric shock) somehow,” Lanter said. “They were extricated from the grain storage area; we went in there with ropes and harnesses and hoisted them out. They both required CPR at the scene.”

With both suffering from life-threatening injuries at the time of their rescue from the grain storage area, first responders prepared to fly them to a regional trauma center aboard a LifeNet medical helicopter. However, the helicopter couldn’t transport someone who is in cardiac arrest, and so Atchison County EMS transported one of the victims on the ground to Atchison Hospital. Lanter said the helicopter took the other man to the University of Kansas Medical Center.

According to a regional media report, the Atchison County Sheriff’s Office identified the electrocuted man as Angel Silas-Deleon, 26, of Longansport, Indiana. The surviving man hasn’t been identified in light of medical privacy concerns. The exact cause of the electric shock remains unclear.

In addition to LifeNet, Atchison County EMS, the Atchison County Rescue service and the Atchison County Emergency Management office, the Atchison Fire Department responded to the scene to assist in the extraction of the victims from the grain storage area. Atchison Fire Chief Ted Graf referred requests for comment to Lanter. A message left with CargillAg at its headquarters in Minnesota did not obtain a reply on Friday.

A security officer at the CargillAg plant said that the plant was closed to all normal business during the course of the rescue operation, temporarily stopping trucks that arrived and declining to allow nonrescue personnel onto the property.

Marcus Clem can be reached via marcus.clem@atchisonglobenow.com. Follow him on Twitter at @AdAstraGorilla.