About the Saw Safety Newsletter and Team
The Saw Safety Team is composed of
- Editor: Ellen Bauske, UGA Center for Urban Agriculture;
- Writers: Wade Hutcheson, Spalding CEA;
- Heather Kolich, Forsyth CEA;
- Brian Maddy, Troup CEA;
- Rolando Orellana, Cobb CEA;
- Gary Pfieffer, Dekalb CEA;
- Phillip Kelley, North American Training Solutions.
The team brings diverse skills, knowledge and practical experience that has allowed team members to idea exchange and improve upon those ideas with group and team power.
Saw Safety is a weekly newsletter of safety tips created by the UGA Saw Safety Team. This newsletter is for professionals in tree care, groundskeeping, and landscape, men and women who put a saw in wood. The letter offers one tip per week, is short and sweet, easy to share, and perfect for tailgate meetings. The goal of Saw Safety is to help companies and public sector entities create a culture of safety within their organizations and to encourage safety discussions.
The steady stream of safety tips is punctuated with tips on sharpening, equipment, personal protection and other great resources. Illustrative, educational, and occasionally funny videos are embedded in the newsletter, when appropriate, and with full respect to copyrights. Events from the Georgia Arborist Association keeps readers up-to-date on training offered throughout the state.
In 2014 tree care and logging officially became the most dangerous work in the United States with a discouraging 78 deaths per year. Accidents abound when falling trees, chainsaws, and heights are combined. Arborists are not the only workers using chainsaws. Landscapers, golf course workers, city and county workers, and many others in public and private sectors all commonly use chainsaws.
In the short time since it was created, the subscription has grown steadily, and the newsletter is widely recirculated. The newsletter started with a circulation of 232 and has grown to 412. Many recipients redistribute the letter within their company, i.e., all 10 Division Safety and Training Coordinators for Bartlett Tree receive the newsletter potentially reaching over 2,000 via redistribution.
The Saw Safety newsletter is both deadly serious and lightly humorous. One reader commented,
“We recently put together a safety training class for volunteers in our CERT Team (Community Emergency Response Team) and other volunteers. Used some of these videos to illustrate what stupidity really looks like.”
Other comments received:
”Great reference for safety meetings.”
“I like the diversity of the newsletter. A little history, industry, and safety. Maybe include more statistics on the different segments of the industry.”
“These safety topics help me stay focused on safety when using chainsaws.”
Incomplete List of the Saw Safety Newsletters:
September 2017 – Current Issue (Updated Format)
- A Terrible Accident – Could This Have Been Prevented?
- Battery Powered Chainsaw – Yep, Battery Powered Chainsaws Are for Real!
- Storm Damage Cleanup – Electricity!
- Financial Safety and Your Business
- The True Cost Of An Accident – Safety is Good Business
- Eye and Face Protection
- Training Resources – Bad Weather Can Make for a Great Training Opportunity
- A New Look
September 2016 – August 2017 (Original Format)
- Chainsaw Chaps or Pants
- The Bar
- Smoking and Fueling
- The Five-Step Felling Plan, Step 3: Plan Your Escape Route
- Protect Yourself from the Summer Heat
- Hard Hats, Helmets, and Tree Care
- Excuse me, did you say “Hearing Protection?”
- Carrying & Transporting Chainsaws
- Site Assessment: The Tree – Take a Good Look at the Tree
- Five Signs of a Dull Saw Chain