A tree trimmer died on Saturday, April 9, 2022, while working 50 feet off the ground in Sherman Oaks, in Los Angeles County. The victim was spotted by a neighbor dangling upside down around noon. About 40 firefighters responded to the scene. They used a truck with an aerial ladder and a rope and harness system to extricate the man, lowering him to the ground. He was pronounced dead at 12:45 p.m.
The authorities do not know how long the man had been hanging upside down. He was believed to be a private contractor and working alone. Although there were live wires near the area he was working, it is not clear whether the wires played a role in his death. The death has been reported to Cal/OSHA, which will investigate along with the L.A. County coroner.
Tree Trimming: A Dangerous Industry
Trimming trees is one of the five most dangerous occupations in the U.S. In the tree industry, where workers are pruning, removing stumps and branches, cabling and bracing, and more, there are many potential hazards and risks. According to OSHA, some of the most common hazards include:
- Getting caught in equipment
- Being struck by tree branches and falling trees
Homeowners are recommended to hire professionals and tree trimmers should never work alone.
California Ranks High for Number of Tree Trimming Deaths
OSHA further reports that California has the most tree care industry injuries, at 296 for the 20 year period between Sept. 23, 2001, and Sept. 23, 2021. The Golden State also had the most injuries per capita, with 0.75 injuries per 100,000 people. All in all, tree trimming injuries are more than 20 times more likely to happen in California than in any other state. Furthermore, an injury per 100,000 residents is more than three times as likely to happen in the state.
In January 2017, CAL/OSHA issued a warning after the deaths of four tree trimmers in two months. One trimmer was struck by a branch, one suffocated by dry palm fronds, one fell when a branch broke, and one was struck by a tree he was cutting.
Call an Orange County Wrongful Death Attorney
As a family member of a loved one who died in an accident, including tree trimming, you may also be entitled to compensation. To ensure you get the full money damages you deserve, you need to consult with and hire an Orange County wrongful death attorney.
For more information or to schedule a complimentary consultation with an OC wrongful death lawyer, please call the Law Offices of Samer Habbas at (888) 848-5084.
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