Trees are always an excellent addition, and often a main focal point, in residential yards and public landscapes.  They add natural beauty and shade to any outside space and are generally a positive presence on your property.  Because trees are living organisms, they are susceptible to diseases and insect infestations that can result in extensive damage.  Trees are also vulnerable to sustaining structural damage from severe storms that include heavy wind, rain, snow, or hail.

There are many instances when professional arborists like those at Hendricksen Tree Care can nurse a sick tree back to health or minimize the damage sustained to save the tree.  However, there are also instances in which a tree has sustained too much damage to be saved.  In these cases, the tree is damaged to the point that it is unstable and its presence is a danger to your property and your safety.  Trees that are deemed unsalvageable must be removed before they collapse and cause additional problems.

The Dangers of Tree Removal

Felling and removing a tree is a difficult and dangerous job that must be done properly and with the right equipment.  Proper tree removal requires an understanding of the physics and biology of trees, knowledge of the equipment used, and an ability to recognize dangerous plants, insects, and deadwood.  When you consider this along with the fact that an average of 200 people die each year due to tree-related injuries, it is best to have a professional arborist handle the tree cutting and removal.  Tree care professionals are highly trained in the process of tree removal and they also have extensive knowledge of trees that helps them recognize certain dangers.

While some homeowners might be tempted to handle tree removal themselves, there are several reasons why this job should be left to professionals:

  • Dangerous equipment: The equipment needed for proper tree removal includes chainsaws, ropes, axes, wood chippers, cranes, and hand tools like clippers. If any of this equipment is used improperly, it can result in very serious injuries or unintentional damage.  Losing focus for even one second with a chainsaw can be catastrophic.  Tree removal professionals have the training and experience to use this equipment properly.
  • Gravity: When cutting down a tree, there is always a chance that it could start falling unexpectedly which can be extremely dangerous. Even if you get the tree to fall intentionally, there is a chance that it won’t fall where you want it to.  You also run the risk of falling out of the tree if you don’t know how to properly use the safety equipment.  Tree removal professionals have the experience to better control how the tree falls, and they know how to use the safety equipment correctly.
  • Power Lines: If the tree that needs to be removed is near power lines, this can make the removal process more dangerous. Coming into contact with power lines can result in damage to the lines or a power outage, or even electrocution.  Professional arborists have experience working around power lines and can do it safely.
  • Deadwood: If a tree is diseased, decayed, or affected by a pest infestation, it could have deadwood. Deadwood is weakened or decayed wood that makes the tree extremely unstable.  Stepping on deadwood can cause the tree to collapse or cause you to fall out of the tree.  Professional arborists can recognize deadwood and deal with it accordingly to prevent collapses or injuries.

Tree Cutting Safety

The arborists of Hendricksen Tree Care, like other professional arborists, use the proper tree care safety equipment to keep themselves protected from injury during the tree removal process.  OSHA requires that arborists are protected from head to foot, with helmets, safety glasses, gloves and boots.  Arborists must also wear tough clothing to protect themselves against debris and poisonous plants.  Our arborists use the following safety gear:

  • Helmets and face shields: Helmets and face shields are a must to protect against flying debris, falling branches, and falls. Falling tree branches can lead to serious head injuries, making it essential to wear a helmet.
  • Gloves: Arborists need their hands to cut and remove tree branches, and they keep their hands protected from cuts and poisonous plants with heavy duty work gloves.
  • Protective clothing: Arborists must wear thick clothing to protect them from scraping against the tree bark, chainsaw debris, and poisonous plants.
  • Safety glasses: Using a chainsaw to cut tree branches creates a lot of debris that can fly back in your face. Using safety glasses or goggles will protect against this flying debris.
  • Earmuffs: Chainsaws, wood chippers, and other equipment used to remove trees is loud and repeated exposure to this noise can damage hearing. Our arborists use earmuffs or ear plugs to protect their ears from the noise.
  • Work boots: Work boots are necessary for tree removal to give arborists a better grip when climbing the tree and protecting their feet from injury.

Tree Removal Process

Properly using the above mentioned protective gear is half the battle when it comes to safe tree removal.  Arborists must also use the proper procedures to not only ensure their own safety, but also to ensure that the tree is removed effectively without causing any damage to the surrounding property.  The following are the necessary steps for safe tree removal:

  • Evaluation: Arborists start by evaluating the tree and the surrounding area to look for broken or weak limbs, deadwood, insects, poisonous plants, and nearby buildings and power lines. They will also try to determine the best way for the tree to fall.
  • Weather: If there is any inclement weather such as rain, wind, snow, or hail that can make the job more dangerous, the tree removal will be held off for another day.
  • Prepare for felling: Once the arborists decide which way the tree should fall, they cut a notch in the tree and put a wedge in the notch to help guide its fall.
  • Felling: Once the wedge is placed in the tree, the arborists will begin cutting and guide the tree down safely with a rope.
  • Removal of the tree: Once the tree has fallen, the arborists will start removing outside branches and work their way in. They will then cut the tree into smaller pieces and remove it from your property.

If you have determined that there is a tree on your property that must be removed because it presents a danger, do not try to remove it yourself.  Tree removal is a dangerous job that should always be left to professional arborists.  Hendricksen Tree Care is a TCIA accredited tree service provider that provides safe and effective tree cutting and removal according to ISA guidelines.  Our arborists take tree care safety very seriously and will ensure that your tree is removed safely without causing harm to you or your property.  Call the professional arborists of Hendricksen Tree Care at (847) 305-5524 if you need a tree removal service at your residence in Arlington Heights, Northbrook, Palatine, and surrounding north Chicago suburbs.