NIOSHTIC-2 Publications Search

A tree trimmer dies from asphyxia when compressed by palm fronds.

Public Health Institute
Morgantown, WV: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, FACE 12CA011, 2014 Feb; :1-7
A tree trimmer died while trimming the fronds from a palm tree in front of an apartment building. The victim climbed up the tree and underneath the dead palm fronds. He cut the dead fronds with a chain saw and then starting pulling on the fronds that were stuck. The frond skirt fell on the victim pressing him against the tree trunk and suffocating him. The victim was not a certified tree worker, nor was he supervised by one. The CA/FACE investigator determined that, in order to prevent future incidents, tree trimming companies and self-employed tree trimmers who trim or remove palm trees should ensure that: 1. Palm tree trimming or removal is performed or supervised by workers trained and certified by organizations such as the Tree Care Industry Association (TCIA) or the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA). 2. Proper work procedures and equipment are used. In addition, property owners who need palm trees trimmed or removed should: 1. Hire only tree trimmers who are trained or certified by organizations such as the TCIA or ISA.
Region-9; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Traumatic-injuries; Employee-exposure; Accident-prevention; Accident-analysis; Accidents; Forestry; Forestry-workers; Training
Publication Date
Document Type
Field Studies; Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation
Funding Type
Cooperative Agreement
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
FACE-12CA011; Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-OH-008468; M042014
SIC Code
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
Public Health Institute
Page last reviewed: November 12, 2021
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division