Thursday, October 6, 2016

Worker killed after he fell 30 feet inside a silo chute at Branstad Farms in rural Forest City, IA

Worker killed in fall at Branstad Farms in Forest City

Molly Montag

FOREST CITY, IA - The death of a worker at Branstad Farms in rural Forest City this week will not be reviewed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Julian Santos Martinez, 46, accidentally fell 30 feet inside a silo chute about 9 a.m. Monday at Branstad Farms, 3020 Highway 69 S., according to a Hancock County Sheriff's Office statement.

Martinez was pronounced dead on the scene.

The operation is owned by Monroe "Monte" Branstad, brother of Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad.

Iowa OSHA Administrator Jens Nissen said Thursday the agency cannot investigate Martinez' death because the farming operation does not fall under its jurisdiction.

The agency is only authorized to investigate incidents at farming operations with 11 or more non-family employees and Branstad Farms does not meet that criteria, Nissen said.

Sheriff's deputies say the case remained under investigation on Wednesday, but evidence suggests Martinez accidentally fell while working.

FOREST CITY, Iowa —An Iowa farm worker died this week after falling roughly 30 feet inside a silo.

The Mason City Globe Gazette reports the fatal fall happened Monday morning at Branstad Farms near Forest City, Iowa.

The Hancock County Sheriff's office says 46-year-old Julian Santos Martinez died at the farm after the fall. The sheriff's office says the death appears to have been an accident.

Officials with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration say they won't investigate the death because the farm doesn't have more than 10 non-family employees, so the agency doesn't have jurisdiction.

The farm is owned by Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad's brother, Monroe "Monte" Branstad.


A Buffalo Center man died in an accident on a farm in Forest City yesterday. According to KIMT News, Julian Santos Martinez, 46 of Buffalo Center accidentally fell 30 feet down an enclosed silo chute yesterday, and was pronounced dead on the scene. Martinez was working for Branstad farms in Forest City.

The Hancock County Medical Examiners office, Forest City Ambulance Service, Forest City Fire Department, Forest City Police Department, Winnebago County Sherriff’s office, and Mercy Air Life assisted at the scene.

Founded in 1968, Branstad Farms is a small organization in the crop farms industry located in Forest City, IA. It has 2 full time employees and generates an estimated $140,000 in annual revenue.

3018 Highway 69
Forest City, Iowa 50436-8048
United States