OSHA Quick Card

Tree Trimming & Removal
Safety Tips


Assume that All Power Lines Are Energized!
  • Contact the utility company to discuss de-energizing and grounding or shielding of power lines.
  • All tree trimming or removal work within ten feet of a power line must be done by trained and experienced line-clearance tree trimmers. A second tree trimmer is required within normal voice communication range.
  • Line-clearance tree trimmers must be aware of and maintain the proper minimum approach distances when working around energized power lines.
  • Use extreme caution when moving ladders and equipment around downed trees and power lines.

Stay Alert at All Times!
  • Do not trim trees in dangerous weather conditions.
  • Perform a hazard assessment of the work area before starting work.
  • Eliminate or minimize exposure to hazards at the tree and in the surrounding area.
  • Operators of chain saws and other equipment should be trained and the equipment properly maintained.
  • Use personal protective equipment such as gloves, safety glasses, hard hats, hearing protection, etc., recommended in the equipment manufacturers operating manual.
  • Determine the trees felling direction. Address forward lean, back lean, and/or side lean issues.
  • Determine the proper amount of hinge wood to safely guide the trees fall. Provide a retreat path to a safe location.
  • Inspect tree limbs for strength and stability before climbing. Tree trimmers working aloft must use appropriate fall protection.
  • Do not climb with tools in your hands.
  • If broken trees are under pressure, determine the direction of the pressure and make small cuts to release it.
  • Use extreme care when felling a tree that has not fallen completely to the ground and is lodged against another tree.
  • Never turn your back on a falling tree.
  • Be alert and avoid objects thrown back by a tree as it falls.




For more complete information:
OSHA Occupational
Safety and Health
Administration
U.S. Department of Labor
www.osha.gov (800) 321-OSHA

OSHA 3301-10-05