Root wad shifts, strikes tree faller on the arm

Nootka Island (west coast Vancouver Island)
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
Company Name: 
Fedje and Gunderson
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A tree faller climbed up on a twenty foot long, 13 inch diameter hemlock windfall that spanned across a dip in the ground, which was 4 ½ feet deep with a radius of about 10 feet.

The faller reached out four feet over the dip with his 37 inch bar and bucked an 1 inch diameter by 31 foot long red cedar windfall, about 4 feet from the root. The windfall was 4 feet on the high side of the hemlock he was standing on (see diagram in attached pdf).

When the cut dropped, the root with the 4 foot log attached fell into the dip and pivoted down the hill, causing one of the roots to strike him on the top of his left arm. He immediately called his partner to come over (his partner was a Level 3 first aid attendant). The faller, on the fifth day of his shift, suffered minor injuries.

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  • Assess the risk from different angles. Attempt to see the chain of events before you make your first cut.
  • Plan your work and work the plan, always stand a safe distance away, do not place yourself below the hazard.
  • Cut long roots off, this can assist with ensuring that you don’t get struck by these types of roots.


For more information on this submitted alert: 

For more information contact: Fedje & Gunderson 250-729-9979

File attachments
Root wad shifts, strikes tree faller on the arm.pdf
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