Are you looking for tips on safe tree trimming? You came to the right place. Keep reading, and be informed.
Tree Trimming Safety
Perhaps you have done the simple trimming on your Christmas tree before. However, when it comes to eliminating broken or dead branches from a tree is a different story. Tree trimming is more than cutting branches—it requires a specific set of skills and the right equipment.
Performing tree trimming involves climbing the tree using hand-held tools such as chainsaws and trimmers. Tall trees require the use of an aerial lift to access branches that need to be trimmed. If you cut your tree without the proper knowledge and the right tools, you put yourself and your tree in danger. Tree trimming entails adequate training and experience, which is why professionals should do it.
Keep these tips in mind before trimming your trees:
- Wear the right PPE.
Don’t go to war without your armor. Make sure to keep your hands protected by wearing safety gloves. Wear a nonconductive hard hat if you’re working near electric lines. You will be exposed to wood particles and dust when trimming, which is why wearing goggles is imperative. Chainsaws and trimmers can produce a loud noise, so make sure to wear earplugs. You may need to climb the tree so secure yourself with non-slip footgear.
- Every tree is different. Plan your action carefully.
A different tree requires a different trimming approach. You may need a ladder for one tree, while you can handle the other just by climbing. In some instances, you will need an aerial lift or a safety harness to reach the branches that need trimming. Make sure not to use dull equipment because it can be harmful to you and your tree.
Be aware of the weather for the day. Put off the job on another day if you’re expecting bad weather, especially if you need to climb the tree. Inspect the site for any hazardous circumstances such as power lines and broken branches. Clean and keep your tools in check to make sure they perform well.
- Protect the people around you.
Put signs around your work area to warn your coworkers and pedestrians. If your tree is near the road, you should wear high visibility clothing. Consider the road’s speed limit so you can decide which signs are necessary.
- Work with a partner.
We always recommend working with a partner when trimming trees. Have someone who will stay on the ground while you work on cutting branches. Have proper training on how to do CPR and first aid in case something worse happens.
- Use nonconductive tools when working near power lines.
If you will require the use of a ladder or pole trimmers, make sure they are made of nonconductive materials. If these tools touch anything with electricity, you can end up being electrocuted. Working near power lines requires more precautionary measures to ensure you don’t get injured. Sometimes, even a downed power line can cause serious injury, so make sure to be extra careful.
- Don’t work too close power lines.
Keep a safe distance from electric lines. Never turn off power lines if you are not trained or authorized to do it. It is best to contact the utility service if you need to work close to a power line. They should be the one to de-energize the line before you begin your work.
- Assess the tree for weak and broken branches or limbs before you climb.
Remove weak and broken limbs as you climb. Don’t step on dead or split branches because they can break and cause you to fall. Climb the tree one step at a time, using separate limbs as support. You may need to use an aerial lift to access tall trees, but don’t attempt to do it unless you are trained in operating this equipment.