Rescue of Teens Prompts Warnings About Grain Elevators

March 7, 2014 Updated Mar 7, 2014 at 9:05 PM EDT

By Ed Reilly

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March 7, 2014 Updated Mar 7, 2014 at 9:05 PM EDT

BUFFALO, N.Y (WKBW) Buffalo is home to a number of old vacant grain elevators that are attracting new attention from sightseers and tourists.

While interesting to look at from the outside, the old industrial remnants remain quite dangerous for people entering them.

Thursday night March 6th, Buffalo Fire Department Rescue crews had to respond to the old Concrete Central Terminal off Ohio Street in order to rescue two 8th grade girls who became lost and trapped inside the deteriorating structure.

Fire officials described the rescue as extremely dangerous because of pitch-dark conditions combined with unseen holes and structural decay.

Both girls were rescued safely with no firemen hurt, but the incident does raise questions about what can be done to make the old silos safe from intruders - especially as the area around "Silo City" is attracting more crowds because of new parks and summer programs.

"Probably warnings and education for the kids not to go in there," said Peg Overdorf, president of the Valley Community Center.

Overdorf said property owners and the City of Buffalo have tried to seal the lower levels of grain elevators only to have the efforts undone by kids looking to sneak into the old complexes.

"They are filled with danger," commented Buffalo Fire Department Battalion Chief Mark Hillery