Dealing with windblown trees is hazardous without appropriate training, equipment and work preparation!

There are many complex hazards in storm-affected forests with thrown, uprooted, broken, heavily leaning and hung-up trees or parts of trees:

  • Impassable and obstructed roads and routes, reduced accessibility and visibility
  • Incalculable tension and forces both in individual trees as well as in jammed stems and root plates
  • Unstable trees, parts of trees, root plates and stones that can suddenly topple, tip over, fall or roll away without any visible reason even days, weeks or months after a storm.

The brochure "Dealing with windblown trees" is intended for people who have to deal with windblown trees. The aim of the Swiss National Accident Insurance Fund (Suva) is to:

  • Make you aware of the particular dangers involved in dealing with windblown trees
  • Encourage you to think about your own capabilities and limitations
  • Inform you about safety rules and measures

The authors have intentionally dispensed with descriptions of working and cutting techniques. These are best learnt in practical courses. Every windblown-tree situation is different and requires an individual approach. Only when taught by a qualified instructor will you learn how to assess a specific situation correctly and how to apply the safest working and cutting techniques.

This brochure is no substitute for minimum basic training nor can it be considered to be a comprehensive training document. It is no substitute for practical, on-the-job training.


The brochure contains the following chapters:

  1. Dealing with windblown trees: A job involving particular hazards!
  2. Is your "life insurance" TOP?
  3. Managers: Adapt your safety concepts
  4. Are you equipped for an emergency?
  5. Warning: Do not expose third parties to risk!
  6. Windblown forest areas: The correct approach
  7. Before every cut: Reassess the situation
  8. Tension: Beware of the hazards – your life could be at risk!
  9. Bringing down hung-up trees
  10. Bringing down a tree with a broken crown touching the ground
  11. Felling the remains of a tree without a crown
  12. Felling heavily leaning trees
  13. Severing trees from their root plates
  14. Publications