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Tree Trimming Company Fined $50,000 after Worker Is Struck by Limb

A home owner hired a tree trimming company to remove two dead trees. The company’s owner operated a bucket truck cutting the tree limbs, while two workers on the ground waited for a tree limb to be lowered. The cut limb, which was about 12 feet long and weighed 100-125 pounds, slipped from the rope and fell about 30 feet, where it struck a worker. He suffered critical injuries, including fractures. The Arborist Industry Safe Work Practices Manual recommends that an arborist identify and mark the drop/fall zone, and ensure workers don’t enter that zone during cutting. The company pleaded guilty to failing to ensure that workers didn’t enter into the drop/fall zone and was fined $50,000 [Landgraff Forestry Ltd., Govt. News Release, Dec. 21, 2015].