Friday 16 February 2018

School groundskeeper dies after being hit by tree branch

A groundskeeper died after being struck by a tree branch while performing maintenance work at a school in Berwick on Wednesday.

The man, aged in his early 30s, is believed to have been using a chainsaw to cut sections of a branch which was partially detached from the trunk of a tree when the incident occurred about 3pm.

WorkSafe is investigating.

The man’s death brings the number of fatalities at Victorian workplaces this year to five, four more than at the same time last year.

WorkSafe Executive Director of Health & Safety Marnie Williams said the tragic incident highlighted how dangerous working with trees could be.

“This is a terrible thing to have happen and our hearts go out to the family and friends of the man who died,” Ms Williams said.

“The care and management of trees can involve complex and dangerous tasks and we would ask everyone involved in this type work to ensure they make safety a priority.”

For more information about working with trees, see Working Safely with Trees at www.worksafe.vic.gov.au

Further Information

WorkSafe media enquiries: Peter Flaherty: 0478 881 663, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Kathleen O'Dwyer: 0435 409 975, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Public enquiries: Call the WorkSafe Advisory Service on 1800 136 089 between 8:30am and 5pm Monday to Friday, email info@worksafe.vic.gov.au or write to Advisory Service, PO Box 4306, Melbourne, 3001.