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Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Echo Lake, Campbell River
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-04-07
Company Name: 
Thibault Logging Ltd. /Critical Site Logging Inc.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Hand faller was working with the operator of a Volvo 210 Excavator falling tree along power lines. When they were in the process of falling a cedar the Volvo operator had to reach out further because of the swampy area. The tree was limb heavy, it twisted in the hold of the Volvo on the way down causing the Volvo track to sink slightly. The top of the tree struck the power line bending over the insulator.

Conditions: Ground condition was swampy.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Soft swampy ground was found to be a contributing factor. In communication with BC Hydro and Worksafe it was recommended that the use of an arborist in future swampy areas where there is a risk of the machine track sinking or losing control be implemented in procedures. Workers to discuss any concerns regarding leaning trees with supervisor and call onsite arborist if necessary.

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Thibault Logging Ltd. /Critical Site Logging Inc.
Phone: (250) 542-8922

File attachments
2008-04-07 Tree Struck Power Line.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Mission
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-03-01
Company Name: 
District of Mission Forestry
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A forestry worker was walking in the landing to process wood when he entered the landing a little too soon and the excavator operator was not aware he was there. The excavator operator started to move and almost bumped or drove into the landing worker. As the landing worker jumped up and away from the excavator, he stumbled. There was no injury to the landing worker, although he could have either been run over, or sprained or fractured something by moving rapidly to a safe position.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Complacency and familiarity can make you too comfortable around equipment and co-workers and could compromise your safety. Be aware and be alert at all times.

Sometimes it is difficult to see through the plexi-glass and cage to know if visual contact with the equipment operator has been adequately made. Do NOT enter worksite until you have the operator’s attention via the horn signal.

Signs will be made and posted at the landing, stating that the equipment operator must signal via the horn (or airhorn) before anyone can proceed into the active worksite.
SOP will be amended to further define how to ensure you have the operator’s attention (via horn).

File attachments
2008-03-01 Too Close to Excavator.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Southern Interior
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-04-01
Company Name: 
Reitmeier Logging Ltd
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

An excavator operator was attempting to jump start a skidder with the excavator he was operating. The operator attached the jumper cables to the excavator and skidder batteries while the excavator was running, and then walked away from the skidder to allow the batteries to charge up before attempting to start the skidder.

As the operator was waiting for the batteries to charge up, both skidder batteries exploded. No one was injured from the explosion.

The operator reported the incident / close call to his supervisor. The supervisor then told the operator that the electrical system for the John Deere skidder was 12 volts, and the electrical system for the Hyundai excavator was 24 volts – a combination that does not match if attempting to jump start the skidder.

The operator thought that because the two 12 volt batteries in the skidder were connected in series (the batteries were in fact connected in parallel), the skidder could be jumped with 24 volts.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Batteries of different voltages should never be used for the purpose of jump starting, especially using batteries of higher voltages to jump start vehicles / equipment / machinery outfitted with batteries / electrical systems of lower voltages (ie: using 24 volt batteries to jump vehicles / equipment / machinery outfitted with 12 volt batteries / electrical systems)

Review Safe Work Practice – Batteries with all employees. The Safe Work Practice should cover battery safety, charging, changing, and jump starting topics.

File attachments
2008-04-01 Batteries Explode.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Errington
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-05-15
Company Name: 
Copcan Contracting Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A skidder operator was turning left, on an 18% slope, when his load of logs shifted as the left rear tire of the skidder went on an 8” high by 14” wide stump. The combination of weight shifting and increased skidder angle to approximately 25% (left rear wheel rising on to the stump) caused the skidder to roll. The skidder operator had found himself confined for room in the landing approach. A high stump (approximately 32’ high) forced the operator to swing turn wide to the left on route down the hill, to enable himself piling and turning space for the logs.

No injuries were sustained by the operator and there was no damage to the Skidder. Operator was wearing his seatbelt at the time of the incident.

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  • Ensure that the landing is clear so Skidder approach is straight up and down the slope.
  • Stumps should be cut 12” or as low as possible so the turn does not bind up on high stumps – if they are not operator should call for bucker to recut stump.
  • Steep slope procedure needs to be developed for each site.
  • If an operator has any concerns he needs to communicate these to his supervisor.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Copcan Contracting Ltd.
(250) 754-7260

File attachments
2008-05-15 Mechanical Harvester Rolled.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Cowichan
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-03-10
Company Name: 
Ted LeRoy Trucking
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A log loader operator was hoe chucking above the road on a 30-40% slope. When the operator swung down towards the road the seat base broke and the operator fell towards the front window. The operator was wearing his seat belt and the safety straps holding the seat to the cab floor prevented the operator from being tossed into the front window.

The seat base was inspected by a mechanic and deemed to have had preexisting cracks. The seat base has now been fixed and updated with a stronger one. The operator only suffered minor soreness to his back but this incident could have resulted in more severe injuries.

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  1. Ensure ALL equipment operators inspect their seats and seat bases for cracks.
  2. Ensure safety straps from the seat to the cab floor are in place and secure. This also re-enforces the importance of seat belt use while operating equipment.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Jim Vaux or Shawn Munson
Ted LeRoy Trucking
Chemainus, BC
250-246-2880

File attachments
2008-03-10 Seat Broke Loose in Loader.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Quesnel
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-01-25
Company Name: 
Jordef Enterprises
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Mechanic partially crushed his right arm/hand while working on a feller buncher Madill 2250.
In the process of checking the hydraulics for an abnormal noise in one of the valve sections, while boom functions were being worked, his right arm/hand became pinched by the moving cover attached to the boom base. Had it not been for the quick reaction by the operator, the mechanic could have lost his hand. Mechanic received several stitches plus a sore arm and had to work only at a light duty level for a week.

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  1. The mechanic did not evaluate the situation for hazard risks before placing his hand/arm adjacent to the moving cover.
  2. Poor lighting may have contributed to the problem as incident occurred in early morning. A trouble light should have been placed in the area he was working to help identify any risks.

 

File attachments
2008-01-25 Mechanic Crushed While Working On Buncher.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Malakwa
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2007-12-17
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Loader Operator was working on setting up roadside yarded logs for loading at approximately 5:30 am before yarding crew arrived. As loader was moving logs around a hemlock log slid down the hill in the dark and hit the backspar machine approx. 400 ft. below road.

Loaderman was not aware that a log had slid down and hit the backspar machine until the yarding crew arrived and noticed the cab on the backspar machine was missing.

No injuries resulted from this incident.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Keep separation between loading area and active yarding roads; make sure logs are stable on road or landing.

Yarding crew to be safe distance from the active yarding road during any operations, and do not sit in backspar machine during active yarding.

File attachments
2007-12-17 Log Hits Backspar Machine.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Southern Interior
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-01-01
Company Name: 
H.A. Friedenberger Contracting Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A cable yarder work site was located along the side of a road (narrow operation due to steep slopes on both sides of the road), and processed wood (hand bucked) was being decked along both sides of the road (decks parallel to the road). The Loader Operator began decking logs onto a new bunk-log deck that was situated beside an existing shortlog deck (both of these decks were located on upper side of road).

The company safety coordinator noticed that some of the logs being placed on the bunk-log deck were intertwined with logs contained in the short-log deck. The safety coordinator intervened - explaining the situation to the loader operator and asking the loader operator to ensure the logs contained in each deck were not intertwined (ensure each deck is separated by a distance of at least one meter). The loader operator complied by moving the logs in the bunklog deck so that all the logs in the deck were separated from the short-log deck.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Adjacent log decks must be separate from each other to ensure that logs from each deck are not intertwined. When logs are intertwined, there is a potential for logs that are being placed in the one deck (in this case – the bunk-log deck) to jar the logs contained in the other deck (in this case – the short-log deck). A chain reaction could cause logs to topple off the deck (short-log deck) uncontrollably and possibly strike any person who may be walking or working (usually the buckerman) below the deck (in this case – the short-log deck).

File attachments
2008-01-01 Close Call With Intertwining Logs.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Northern Interior
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-01-01
Company Name: 
WorkSafeBC
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A rigging crew was working in difficult conditions. As a log was being yarded in, a problem developed and the stop signal was given. The top of the log pivoted from its base and fell under and across the mainline, striking and fatally injuring the rigging slinger who was not in the clear.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

All workers, including the person who gives the signal, must be in the clear before the go-ahead signal is given.

File attachments
2008-01-01 Log Falls Across Mainline-Fatally Injurying Worker.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Vancouver Island
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-01-01
Company Name: 
WorkSafeBC
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A haulback line was sawn into the up-hill side of a stump, creating a bight in the line (a siwash). To clear the siwash, a hooktender started to buck the stump from the uphill side of the stump, outside the bight. He then stepped below the stump and started cutting the stump on the downhill side, inside the bight. As he cut through the stump, the energy in the siwashed haulback line released. This energy created a slingshot-like motion that carried the stump and the hooktender over a steep bank. The hooktender was fatally crushed when the flying stump landed on him.

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  • Never work in the bight of any yarding line.
  • Ensure that, after any road change, all yarding lines are clear, before the rigging crew starts yarding logs.
  • Supervisors, review with all yarding crews the safe method of preventing and removing any siwashed lines; also provide workers with written jobsafety procedures.

 

File attachments
2008-01-01 Fatality Result of Flying Stump.pdf
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