Safety Bulletins

Chainsaw Cuts. Never Pretty!

Background to Noggin INC570 22/11/17. A tree feller was trimming branches when the stem suddenly moved causing him to lose his footing and balance. His wrist then made contact with the spinning chain severing two tendons.

Qualifications and Experience - L4 National Certificate in tree Felling; 20 years forestry industry experience with 10 of those working as a tree feller.

Immediate and Root Cause Factors: In this incident, a moving stem caused the chainsaw operator to lose his balance. This occurred due to the need to manually trim the larger branches.

Injuries, First Aid and Medical Treatment: The observer immediately applied first aid stopping blood-flow with a tourniquet. The injured tree feller was then driven to Hospital where he was assessed and operated on. His wrist will remain in a plaster cast for 6 weeks at which time we hope he will be healed and ready to return to light work.

Tips for Safe Chainsaw Operation…

  • Ensure that stem placement allows for sufficient room to work. See ACOP rule 13.2.3!
  • If stems appear to be unstable, direct a machine to reposition them.
  • Hold the saw firmly with both hands and use the correct stance and work techniques.
  • Routinely check the condition of protective equipment (PPE) and chainsaw safety devices.

View this article in Safety Bulletin 110