A survey of safety issues in tree-climbing applications for forestry management


Topping, trimming, consolidation, securing and felling are very common operations in arboriculture, in city park as well as in forests. In case of very large trees, these operations are often not possible from ground level using ladders or Mobile Elevating Work Platforms (MEWPs) because of excessive height or uneven/inaccessible terrain. In past years, different people start applying techniques, materials and procedures normally used in mountaineering and caving, to climb trees and these techniques start to be applied to forestry management operations; these techniques are now worldwide used. Work activities at height, as tree-climbing for forestry management purpose, are regulated in Italy by Legislative Decree 81/08 about safety in the workplace, as this activity expose operators to fall from height and many other risks. Moreover, as this activity involves the use of specific tools, operators must be trained (with periodic refreshment) and tools must been periodically checked by authorised operators. The objective of this work is to present and synthesise regulations and some technical aspects in order to allow operators to better understand different issues and general principles related to this activity.


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legislative decree 81/08, tree-climbing, worker and workplace safety, fall from height, PPE directives, forestry management.
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How to Cite
Longo, D., Caruso, L., Conti, A., Camillieri, D., & Schillaci, G. (2013). A survey of safety issues in tree-climbing applications for forestry management. Journal of Agricultural Engineering, 44(2s). https://doi.org/10.4081/jae.2013.383