Arborists, also known as tree surgeons, are the people involved in the research, diagnosis, treatment, and general care of trees.
They frequently deal with tasks like pruning, crown reduction, insects and pest control, fertilization, and planting particular species in the areas according to their environment.
Their job is technical and requires great skill sets, strength, and in-depth knowledge of trees.
When involved in such tasks, arborists should take care of their safety, because if treated with negligence, these tasks can lead to serious accidents and self-harm, especially when they climb up trees or work with chainsaws.
So let’s have a look at what you can do to increase personal protection with these arborist tools.
It is a part of the job to understand the difference between the tools and clearly know where and when to use them.
Helmets are mandatory whether you are working at height or on the ground. Experiencing a fall from a tree or getting hit by the falling branches are the most common injuries among arborists.
Such mishaps can lead to severe head fractures if not well protected by a safety helmet.
This makes the Helmet a must-have tool for Arborists to perform arboricultural operations.
The Kask Superplasma in white, which is a hard hat made up of ABS polymer is an example of an approved helmet. These helmets are very strong and can take up deflection protection and impact protection very well.
Along with that, its edges are slopped and turned downwards, specially built for working on the rainy days when water getting into the clothing can be a big distraction, this safety helmet won’t only protect your head but also keep you from losing focus.
Tip: these helmets have a code that tells you when they are made since they are made up of plastic polymer excessive sunlight can harm their flexibility and become brittle.
So you should test the helmet before you use it. You can do this easily by taking the helmet in your hands by the sides then squeeze as hard as you can and look for the cracks or visible lines.
The mid-range sound from the chainsaw is unbearable. It is loud enough to cause hearing loss and such noise can cause fatigue and headache if not blocked.
Hearing protection is essential for the well-being of your ears, but earplugs alone are not enough protection. You need earmuffs that cover the outer part of your ear to completely block the noise coming into your ears, so you can focus on taking care of trees.
The American national standard institute is a committee that defines the standard of tree-cutting safety equipment.
This standard of safety is set by industry professionals and experts after many experiments.
According to ANSI, tree surgeons should guard their eyes and face with goggles and face shields when engaging in any arboricultural operations.
When working with a chainsaw and chopping of woods, your face and eyes are vulnerable to the little chunks and pieces that come flying at you and if it enters the eyes can drastically affect your performance and irritate your eyes.
That is why you have to wear both of them. Safety glasses and face shield.
There are several kinds of glasses and face shields which you can use to protect your eyes.
AIRSPECS STEEL MESH GLASSES$10.00
These are very popular on humid days. Because they don’t fog up. Their mesh frame structure is designed to block the flying objects that are 1 mm in diameter.
Ballistic Safety Glasses
These Chainsaw glasses are panoramic to give a full view of your surrounding without fogging up. It comes with a side window and rubber temples are comfortable on your ears.
Whenever you buy glasses, it is key that they fit you right and are made exactly for your needs. So, for a better experience take a look at these safety glasses.
Gloves are not only important for chainsaw operators but climbers and the ground crew as well.
For the operator, gloves are important because it protects from lacerations and cuts.
Chainsaw gloves come with protection at the back of your left hand. Usually, people are right-handed and use their left hand to grab the handle.
This is to make sure your hand is well protected if the chain breaks and the saw move upwards.
Gloves also create a barrier between your skin and harmful chemicals, which in this case is oil.
It also protects the climber from sticky substances coming out of the tree or from a branch with a sharp end.
It is very important to protect the legs from gashes and cuts by covering them up with Chaps, pants, and aprons.
Because every year in the US, there are over 30,000 chainsaw-related injuries, some of which are catastrophic.
Most of these injuries occurred because the operator failed to fully gear up with personal protective equipment(PPE).
Here are different kinds of chainsaw protective equipment to make sure you are fully covered. These safety tools act as a shield and prevent the chainsaw strikes from penetrating the musculature.
These apron chaps are similar to pants, other than they are open from the back. Its material can be very different ranging from Denier Nylon to Kevlar, can be a mix or blend.
But a question may arise in your head, how a piece of cloth is going to protect me from a chainsaw?
So the idea is whenever the chainsaw comes in contact with the garment, fibers from the chap get stuck in the turning wheel, which completely jams the chainsaw. This provides you enough time for reflexes, so you can pull your hands away from your legs.
However, if you ever have an impact on these chaps you know that when fibers get exposed or melt they are no longer helpful, and you will have to replace them with a new one.
They are one size fits all with some clips on the sides of the leg, you can tighten it up and make sure they don’t move around when taking the strike of the chainsaw.
The last one is cutting or chainsaw pants. These pants have full 360-degree leg projection, and they are on the cooler side and are a better fit for the crew who will climb up the trees rather than an operator.
Chainsaw pants give protection against saw at the front of the leg. The characteristic feature of these pants is that they are on the lighter side, weigh less than 3 pounds. Material is breathable and lets moisture escape from the body.
It is used mostly when you have to move around in the woods or when you’re working in an area full of spikes and bushes.
Chainsaw boots and climbing boots have a thick sole to make sure that you don’t sprain your ankles when walking on the planks and rocks or climbing trees. Boots should provide stability, flexibility, and they are lightweight despite their thick sole.
Boots also have heel stabilization, puncture protection, and a nonslip sole to assist you on rainy days.
If the area you are working in is exposed to traffic or when you have to work in the woods, High visibility vest is a must to be seen by others. The chances of getting struck by traffic or something falling over is increased if people can not spot you easily.
ANSI, after carrying out multiple experiments to come up with a plan that provides maximum safety, announced the standards of arborists’ personal protective equipment(PPE). As an arborist you have to exercise these standards that demands to cover your head, eyes, ears, hands, and legs with safety gear before you involve in any arboriculture operation.