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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 123480.015 - Employee Is Struck And Killed By Falling Tree

Accident: 123480.015 -- Report ID: 0950615 -- Event Date: 01/27/2020
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
1458603.01501/27/2020Clements Tree Service Inc.
At 11:00 a.m. on January 27, 2020, a crew of 7 workers were removing eucalyptus trees from a wooden hillside between residential properties for the second day. In the wooden area, there were many snag trees, or thin, dead or dying trees that were more than 20 feet tall and less than 12 inches in diameter. The crew had attached a rope at the top of the tree being removed, which had a base diameter of approximately 30 inches and was 54 feet long. The crew was going to use this rigging system to drop the tree once their supervisor had finished making the back-cut on the tree. Employee #1, who was a groundsman, was standing downhill with three coworkers approximately 64 feet away while facing the tree that was going to be removed. The supervisor began felling the tree while Employee #1 and coworkers were downhill pulling on the rigging system. After the supervisor gave the signal, Employee #1 and the coworkers pulled the tree and it began to fall. However, the branch of a tree obstructed the fall of the tree that was being removed. A snag tree, which was approximately 12 inches in diameter and 64 feet in length, fell downhill in a direction perpendicular to the tree being removed and it struck Employee #1 in the head, approximately 15 feet from the top, and resulted in killing Employee #1. Emergency personnel pronounced Employee #1 dead at the scene.
Keywords: struck by, rigging, head, tree, tree felling
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 1458603.015 38 M Fatality Concussion Laborers, except construction

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