Occupational Safety Hazards for Tree Trimmers

Occupational Safety Hazards for Tree Trimmers

by / Wednesday, 02 November 2022 / Published in Workplace Woes
Tree trimmer in a tree cutting a branch.

Many types of yard care projects are safe and easy for homeowners to do by themselves. However, tree trimming is one that is very often best left to professionals.  While tree trimming is important for many different reasons, from general tree health and aesthetics to preventing safety hazards, there are many risks involved with the job. Properly trimming a tree generally involves climbing, having to work at elevated heights, and needing to use powerful tools. Naturally, this means professionally working in tree trimming or removal comes with many occupational safety risks and it’s very important for workers to be trained and be provided with proper protective gear.

 

Occupational Hazards for Tree Trimmers

Electrocution

Not only does tree trimming involve working at a height, it often involves working near active power lines. In some cases, electrocution can happen by making direct contact with a live power line, electrocutions can also happen through indirect contact, such as by holding equipment that touches a live power line. Electrical arcing is another way people can get injured. 

Falls

When people work at elevated heights, falls are an inherent risk. It’s extremely important that workers be provided with adequate, well-maintained climbing gear and that workers are educated in how to follow appropriate procedures for using fall protection equipment.

Struck by Falling Limbs

Falling limbs can potentially cause serious damage, both in terms of property damage and injuries to others. Because of this, hard hats are critical pieces of safety equipment to have. It’s also important to evaluate job sites to establish drop zones where branches are likely to be falling. 

Eye Injuries & Hearing Damage

With all the powerful tools tree care professionals need to use, the risk for eye injuries and hearing damage are very serious problems to address. For example, it’s very easy for debris to get in a person’s eye. Regularly spending time with loud saws can also cause long-term damage to a person’s hearing. Equipment like face shields, safety goggles, and hearing protection are all essential tools for tree trimmers.

Cuts & Getting Caught In/By Equipment

Saws and wood chippers are some of the most commonly used tools by professional tree trimmers. But if that equipment isn’t maintained and repaired as it should be or recommended safety measures aren’t followed, people can easily end up with serious cuts or have their hands/arms get caught in machinery. Improper guarding on a chipper is one way a person can get caught in a piece of equipment.

Contact a Michigan Workplace Injury Lawyer

Even though tree care is a job that comes with several inherent risks, employers still have a responsibility to take reasonable steps to protect the safety of their employees. If you’ve been injured on the job, don’t hesitate to contact a workplace injury lawyer for help with your workers compensation claim. Even if it seems like your employer is being cooperative, a lawyer can help make sure you get all of the benefits you’re entitled to while you recover. 

At Goodwin & Scieszka, we have experience helping the victims of workplace accidents in the state of Michigan get the care they need. Contact us today to find out how we can help you.

Image: nightowl / Pixabay

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