Safer work at fast pace along power line corridors
Things move quickly when a team is felling trees and cutting branches along a power line corridor. It's a tough job that requires high precision at all times. Gerry Breton, Safety Director at Lucas Tree Experts, decided at an early stage to invest in Husqvarna saws with the unique chain brake TrioBrake. It proved to be a profitable investment. Chainsaw user Bill Raleigh and his colleagues are now working smarter – using better working techniques and working more safely and ergonomically.
Simpler, more efficient work
Bill Raleigh sees several clear advantages with TrioBrake. Among other things, it makes chainsaw work simpler and more efficient. "TrioBrake definitely allows you to move more smoothly and work faster. For example, when you're cutting or trimming a tree, all it takes is a flick of the right wrist against the rear guard to stop the chain – and you have your left hand free to remove branches and other things that are in the way". Another important advantage, says Bill Raleigh, is that TrioBrake forces you, so to speak, to adopt correct working techniques such as bending your knees and not your back, which helps you work more ergonomically.
Reduced risk of injury
This reduces the risk of back pain and other repetitive strain injuries that might otherwise occur if you stand or use the saw incorrectly. Gerry Breton interjects: "If you work in a good ergonomic position, with the saw close to you, it also reduces the risk of a kickback. It's important for us to ultimately reduce the number of accidents in the field”. At the same time, it is of course a question of eliminating any obstacles in order to be able to work efficiently and profitably. "TrioBrake doesn’t affect your productivity at all when you’ve get used to the saw and work in the right way. On the contrary, TrioBrake definitely promotes a smarter way to work".
Lucas Tree Experts operate in Portland, Maine in the north-eastern corner of the United States. The company has around 250 employees and specialise in keeping power line corridors clear and tidy. On the ground they fell trees that are too close to the pylons and they use skylifts to cut away damaged branches when there's a risk that they may fall on to the power lines. Safety Director Gerry Breton oversees the job. Gerry says he became acquainted with chainsaws at a young age.
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"Was I crazy?"
He remembers one particular incident when he was going to help his father remove the outer porches on some apartment houses that they owned. "My dad was a little worried about going out on to the porches himself. So instead he tied a rope around me and said: ‘Don't worry Gerry, it's not dangerous’, and he had me climb out of the window with an electric saw in my hand to do the necessary cutting”. "When I think back on that I wonder: Was I crazy?", says Gerry and laughs. “It's certainly not something I would do today – at least not without any safety equipment”. Gerry Breton loves his job and says he has a passion for safety. For that reason it took him no time at all to agree when Husqvarna asked him if Lucas Tree Experts would like to test saws with TrioBrake.
3 ways to stop the chain
TrioBrake is Husqvarna's unique chain brake that enables the chain to be stopped quickly in three different ways: automatically via the inertia function or manually when the operator comes into contact with the front or rear guard. Besides the fact that TrioBrake stops the chain in the event of a kickback, the chain brake is also triggered if the chainsaw is not used in the right way in terms of working technique and ergonomics. Lucas Tree Experts now have a lot of saws with TrioBrake being used out in the field. "Operators who use TrioBrake saws have improved the way they work, because the saw has forced them to", says Gerry Breton.
A comfortable saw to work with
Someone who can confirm this is Bill Raleigh, an experienced user and chainsaw instructor who is part of a team working along a power line corridor in New Gloucester just north of Portland. "I've been using this saw for almost four years and I really love it", says Bill Raleigh during a break from work. "It's a comfortable saw to work with both on the ground and in the air and the rear guard doesn't get in the way at all".