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kevinjohnsonmbe

Preventing Tree Work Injuries

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Accidents are always going to happen unfortunately. Part of being a human being is making mistakes, however you can minimise the repercussions with careful but simple planning.

E.g. When working solo I keep my rope in a kit bag so it does not get fouled up on the ground. You have to be your own rescue climber & let's be realistic, even if you have one site & you suffer a major bleed then you need to get your ass out of the tree asap- on a decent sized tree, a ticketed occasional climber will be probably retrieving a corpse after they have run 100m to retrieve there kit, put it on & made there way up to you. Think about it!

 

 

People these days seem to focus on extra training or extra paperwork & other such bullshite to reduce accidents, when perhaps looking after ourselves is the best way to give us the best chance of getting through the day e.g. eat enough food - drink enough fluid - rest when you get knackered, all of which can ruin your concentration. non of it is rocket science, you just have to set yourself up to succeed.

 

This..100% bang on.Particularly on the rescue climber,self rescue would always be the prefered method unless your unconscious of course.

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We are not Tree Surgeons, but I must comment on this hard working/under pressure aspect. Albeit from a different point of view.

 

A BP site we were working on. All the usual masses of RAMS/Meetings/Supervision and unbelievable H&S on site.

 

Their top H & S man and his oppo, came upto our foreman and said, "We've been watching you; we are concerned over manual handling. We think you are working too hard and not having enough breaks!

 

Our foremen replied with "Thank you, but this is who we are, this is what we do, please do not compare us to how you feel after a couple of hours gardening and thanked him for his concern"

 

Did make me think, that all they were doing was exemplifying the clients duty of care to their subcontractors. Which is often lacking (once the paperwork boxes have been ticked).

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They produce a competent operative - now that is definitely not a proficient or an excellent one. So, I think the question should be;

 

"At what level do you expect individuals to be trained to & how does the current standard measure up to this?"

 

What do you think?

 

I think you hit the nail on the head, current training is not adequate but it is probably the most appropriate we can aim for at present.

 

We have trainees one currently has most of the relevant tickets although it will be a few years of careful supervision and good guidance before he is in my opinion competent to carry out tree work without supervision or at least another experienced hand on site.

 

The other issue I have seen over the years is for want of a better word inbreeding where by you only ever as good as the best you have meaning bad practice becomes the norm.

 

Perhaps there should be further levels, such as having your basic tree climbing and aerial rescue but look to further this with level 2 and 3 with 3 being the highest. How to implement this I do not know but would aim at years experience and being able to demonstrate this.

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Kevin`s on a roll :thumbup1:

 

Preventing work injuries, where do you start with this one ? I have witnessed a few accidents over the years and thankfully none have been fatalities. The tough bit is that in hindsight they were all 100% avoidable. I think aside of climbers taking lumps out of themselves with a tophandle or dropping chogs on the groundies most of the accidents involving ground staff occur when the guys are left without a team leader, uncoordinated and doing their own thing. Its a team effort , someone needs to be in charge and everyone really does need to be singing off the same hymn sheet.

 

Sounds easy doesn't it :001_rolleyes:

 

Bob

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They produce a competent operative - now that is definitely not a proficient or an excellent one. So, I think the question should be;

 

 

 

"At what level do you expect individuals to be trained to & how does the current standard measure up to this?"

 

 

 

What do you think?

 

 

Good question Pete. Personally, based upon the schedule and the training delivery at the time, my training experience was very positive. For myself, I set about the training progression and transition into work at my own pace and under circumstances that I chose. There was no inferred or assumed "debt of liability" to an employer for providing the "opportunity" nor did I have to work at a pace or in circumstances that were not entirely of my own choosing. Totally appreciate these circumstances are not universally available and that employers need to see a return on the investment of staff training. So to answer the question, in so far as I might be able to, I wouldn't ask a climber to do anything I wouldn't be comfortable with / capable of myself or that I thought might be beyond their capability and experience. I can only say, from my perspective, that the schedule and training delivery were highly relevant and well delivered / assessed. The problem with "incidents" is more likely to be the "human factor" rather than a systemic shortfall in the training schedule.

 

(Not sure if that makes any sense on reflection, bit of a lager induced ramble!)

 

in which category to do accidents occur? newly qualified but not that competent or seasoned pro with many years under their belt rushing or cutting corners? or is it a mix, must be some trends, not read any data myself so dont know but would be keen to read up on it.

carl

 

 

There's nothing, in sufficient detail, to allow analysis. Experienced / inexperienced, pro / am, employed / self employed, fresh / tired, overworked / well supported....

 

If only they were!

Edited by kevinjohnsonmbe

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Kevin`s on a roll :thumbup1:

 

 

 

Bob

 

 

 

 

(Not sure if that makes any sense on reflection, bit of a lager !

 

 

Think I've peaked and started the inevitable downward slide into jibberish Bob!!

 

The only bit I meant to say, but forgot, was than since being on the ground more than in the tree, I've come to appreciate the value and challenge of trying to be a good groundy. A good groundy is essential to an efficient and safe climber.

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I don't want to divert things too much from the catastrophic and tragic element of this thread, but by far the biggest number of injuries forcing climbers to quit the industry early are caused by wear and tear.

Wrists, elbows, shoulders, knees etc.

Everyone needs to look at the big picture.

The tree game is great, don't leave it early.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Arbtalk

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I don't want to divert things too much from the catastrophic and tragic element of this thread, but by far the biggest number of injuries forcing climbers to quit the industry early are caused by wear and tear.

Wrists, elbows, shoulders, knees etc.

Everyone needs to look at the big picture.

The tree game is great, don't leave it early.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Arbtalk

 

 

Just about to head for shoulder surgery for a SLAP 2 tear. Too much cut and hold and overhead work with hedge trimmers apparently. Also had one CTS op and in need of a second but I think for me, my biggest concerns on the job are head space, such as being pushed into training a newbie when I'm not actually a trainer (only the two of us on the crew), having a manager who has no idea about the job we do and is a "tick box" person so it's all about getting the jobs ticked off. I find her attitude along with trying to train, run a crew and do the job plus be responsible for everything leaves me in a mental fog. That's when you end up thinking and worrying about everything BUT the job and that's when mistakes are made. Lack of sleep, poor coordination and judgement is a follow on symptom. Relationship problems, money worries etc. can all take a toll on your state of mind and it should never be underestimated the amount of danger this can present when you're 20m up a tree swinging a saw around.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Arbtalk

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Kevin`s on a roll :thumbup1:

 

Preventing work injuries, where do you start with this one ? I have witnessed a few accidents over the years and thankfully none have been fatalities. The tough bit is that in hindsight they were all 100% avoidable. I think aside of climbers taking lumps out of themselves with a tophandle or dropping chogs on the groundies most of the accidents involving ground staff occur when the guys are left without a team leader, uncoordinated and doing their own thing. Its a team effort , someone needs to be in charge and everyone really does need to be singing off the same hymn sheet.

 

Sounds easy doesn't it :001_rolleyes:

 

Bob

 

100% bag on the money Bob

 

Yes some one needs to be in charge "supervising" watching every thing that's going on

 

Communication Is vital every one needs to know what's going on who's doing what "site briefing"

 

And we like to have spare climbing kit & 1st Aid kits on site where there needed along with site signs, barriers

 

Also house keeping is very important keep the site clean & tidy removes tripping hazards and stops climbing rope going tro chippers wile still attached to climbers

 

good team, team work, work safely, go home at the end of day

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in which category to do accidents occur? newly qualified but not that competent or seasoned pro with many years under their belt rushing or cutting corners? or is it a mix, must be some trends, not read any data myself so dont know but would be keen to read up on it.

carl

 

Arboriculture statistics

 

Self employed seem at more risk. Probably cause they work on their own more often, but also may include non-qualified 'tree surgeons'.

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