While a man was trimming a tree in South Hill in April, a man's chainsaw kicked back, which led to him experiencing a substantial injury. The South Hill Fire Chief later reported that the victim was a commercial tree trimmer who was working close to the intersection of East Rockwood Boulevard and South Helena Court. The man is reported to have been going in and out of consciousness and was not able to get himself down from the tree. Fortunately, crews were able to get the man from the tree and later transported him to a nearby trauma center where the accident victim is reported to be in serious condition.
The Tree Care Industry Association found that fatalities among tree workers dropped 22% in 2007, but that incidents decreased by 16%. This analysis was based on studying 129 tree work-related incidents. The Association also found that the average age of workers in these accidents was 43. The accidents tended to include victims who were not secured. Workers who were involved in either struck-against or struck-by incidents were the most common. Electric shock and burn was also a common occurrence.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has outlined both the dangers involved with tree trimming as well as what works can do to reduce the risk of getting injured. The following dangers include:
- Traffic control operations, which involve both safely navigating vehicles as well as dealing with pedestrians. To reduce the types of accidents, workers should make sure to create traffic control strategies as well as inform workers about how to remain safe in traffic zones.
- Drop zones are areas in tree trimming where workers can be struck by falling parts of trees. By using cones or barrier tape to inform workers about the location of drop zones, it is often possible to drastically reduce the risk of these accidents. Other times, workers might train on communication methods.
- Chipper hazards involve workers who push material into wood chippers. Workers can avoid accidents involving chippers by making sure to always follow the manufacturer's instructions. Workers should also make sure that safety guards and emergency shut-off features are properly maintained and in working order.
- Workers can be thrown while trimming trees from elevated buckets. To stay safe, workers should make sure to always follow the manufacturer's instructions. It is also a good idea to remain observant of overhead power lines or other obstacles.
- Sometimes workers are electrocuted while working close to tree limbs or branches because they come into contact with power lines. Workers should be trained to identify and how to best avoid power lines. Also if a power line falls close to equipment or a worker, it is a good idea to move away from the equipment.
Speak With an Experienced Accident Attorney
Following work equipment accidents caused by someone else, it is common for victims to wonder what their options are to proceed. In this situation, one of the best steps that a victim can take is to obtain the assistance of a compassionate personal injury lawyer. Contact West Law Office today for assistance.