Son of the "Close Calls" thread!

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I tried this somewhere else, I can't remember where. It didn't get the stellar results all of us strive for when thread starting... So here it is again, the Close Calls thread.

Post em' if ya' got em'...... I'll start with an old favorite, then slowly move my others while you all decide to participate or not. And please,, be honest enough not to say, "Our government wouldn't allow for such an near-accident to take place." :lol:


I was doing a Blue Spruce removal and had two groundmen pulling the brush as I would cut, then advance a few steps, cut, advance, cut....

As my feet were approx' 12 foot or so from the ground, I had just hung my saw and was ready to go higher. As I looked down before I made more cuts, one of the groundsmen reached for a limb,, then immediately dropped the branch and jerked his arm back behind himself.

What had happened is there was a hornet nest built throughout three or so limbs and when I cut one, it ripped the nest open.

Before I knew what happened to Ronnie, the whole area was engulfed in a cloud of pissed off bees! They were swarming around in circles trying to find who to kill!

Just then, I decided to pull my saftey off and jump from the tree! As I unhooked the snap, I just pulled my spurs and "tried" to fall.

My safety was an old-school prusik type that was looped on one end where you could adjust it. The loop had snagged on a stub I left and it swung me upside down quicker than anything! Now I'm hung up with the right side of my safety and I'm trying to sink a spur in the tree with my left leg- to get upright again so I can resume jumping. "This all took place within the blink of an eye-- I move pretty fast when I'm about to get stung half a million times!"

I finally got a foot hold, flipped the safety off the stub and dropped straight down. I had landed on my feet, then did a backwards -tuck and roll type manuevour then back to my feet and I ran like hell.

All this without landing on my chainsaw or getting one sting! The acrobatic move was all by chance, I'm not nearly that nimble.......
Sounds like fun, too bad there's no video to go with that. :)
Going up in my bucket with no outriggers, tieing off to a dead limb, lightening stricking close to me, a chipper nearly crushing me, hornets attacking me before I was tied in, getting shocked by power lines, driving a loaded truck with no brakes, working on hot power lines, trimming rednecks trees that didn't want their trees trimmed, making big cuts with dull saws, ect...
Oh I tripped, fell & nearly cut my head off with my saw.
An exaggeration of course. But it was none the less a close call. Just from the stand point I still have my eye & could have just as well cut my own throat. Just went through my 5Th related surgery. Feels like the Doc put 16 penny nail in my face:(

More Darvacett please:|:
Ha, me too! All of the above, and then some more. :|:

(except for almost cutting my head off)
Really nothing funny about this thread, but HAAAAAAAHHHHHHAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHAAAAAAAA!!!!

You don't have time to get me started.
I don't really like this thread, as my close calls could have killed me. But I will post one.

this happened to me two times.

Cutting euc branches from a topped tree. They were about 3-4 inches in dia. Next to power wires. Damp day, spurs sunk in good.
I was cutting and guiding the branches into a good path downwards. didn't realize that the branches were as long as they were. the tips brushed the wires and I got a hell of a jolt. Burned boot where the current passed through me, through the metal spur and into the tree.

Each time what I think saved my life was that the branch was too heavy to hold, but just right for guiding as I finished the cut. So the branch pulled out of my hand instead of the electricity making my hand lock on to the branch.

Still a sucky thread. I think it is bad to re-live mistakes. Better in my opinion to live and learn to work another day. IMO.
As a wildland firefighter:

It would be really hard to describe this one but suffice to say I fell a burnt out log onto myself and it rolled over me and then off a cliff. I was remarkably unhurt and no one saw me do it.

A big sky crane helicopter misjudged the ground and hit his bucket on the hill above us. If he had panicked and flicked the pickle switch he would have killed a few of us.

As a Tree Climber:

I cut one branch that was longer than I thought and it brushed a wire on the way down giving me a little jolt.

A ground guy did not let a piece run at all and it swung all the way around the rigging spar and back at me. I took my climbing saw and punched the piece as hard as I could as it came at me and deflected it enough.

I was working in Mill Valley California where every home starts at $1 million and a large round started to roll down the hillside. I jumped in front of it and slowed it until another guy jumped in to help. It almost abused me and if we hadn't stopped it it would have done bad things to the house below.

Early on I had a TIP start to break out and I speed rappelled to the ground. It was on a hill and I hit the ground running. I was more worried about the piece that broke out hitting me than anything.

And lots more that I don't remember now.
My close calls have made me take a moment at times to reavaluate the situation.
Slow down a 1/2 step or so. Look around one more time.
Make sure my line is clear.
Check the drop zone one last time.
Watch the street & sidewalk rather than my saw while doing my back cut etc.......
I've got a strange one that happened recently.

Big leader from a silver maple came down and crushed three cars. I was cutting a piece that was about 20" dia and 10 ft. long that was hanging off of the roof of an suv. My plan was to jump cut it off of the vehicle, I was using a 440 and cutting above my head, also was under the piece of wood I was cutting (two mistakes already)

As the piece went I stepped back, the wood fell onto a broken off sideview mirror that was laying on the ground. The mirror was angled in such a way that it shot upwards and drilled me in the chest with such force that it almost knocked me off of my feet!
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Wow! Those were pretty good guys.. An Old Monkey, I had a similar thing happened when I was helping a friend in the hills of Moundsville West Virginia, pull out an old stump so he could widen his mountain pass drive-way....

We had a cant hook, peavey, and a spud bar- trying to muscle this thing on it's side to roll it out of the way.. Well,, we finally got in turned just right. The root ball was now 5' and the trunk stump was approx. 3' in diameter.

As we gave it a roll, it got away from us and went sailing down the mountain side. At every other rotation it would hit something on the way down that would send it shooting upwards into the air,, only to have it land and move even faster than it was.

Everything would have been alright but he had a neighbor that lived down the mountain, right in the path of this monster screaming it's way down toward it.. After a few more bounces and dirt flying off the stump, it went out of sight. We both stood there just waiting to hear the CRASH!

He ran to get his pickup truck and we went sliding down the mud slick hill to see where the log ended up. There it was, sitting just a few feet away from his neighbors kitchen, stopped by an old growth Beech tree.

The feeling of relief was overwhelming! I'd say one of the happiest days I had experienced all that year...
i had a similar one greg. a few years back we were takind down some historic maples in jacksonville, and the television was there. they filmed a clip of me tipping over 15-20' log for the evenng news. what they idnt see cause the log was in the way was as the but dropped it landed on the face cut which shot out and hit me full in the chest knocking me back a step or 2. it didnt hurt or even hit the saw, it was like a 2 handed push on the chest
I was taking a big hanger out of an oak on Powerline Drive in New Orleans about 60' up and even with some mac daddy transmission lines. It was bridged between two crotches and the tip of one was waaay inside minimum approach, no more than 3' from one of the conductors. It was raining and I was already puckered pretty good. I tied the hanger off and cut it, when I did, the crotches separated, that tip shifted suddenly and was about a foot and a half from touching the line. I could taste metal. :O ... I almost pissed myself.
I must have done 20 of those way too close to the line jobs while I was there but that was the one I remember like it was yesterday.

My other really close one was seeing my lifeline just fall away from me as I started to climb after switching over to DdRT after footlocking almost 70'. :\: The clevis unscrewed and fell out of one of the bridge shackles on my harness; I'm not sure exactly when... sobering. I use Locktite now.
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The clevis unscrewed and fell out of one of the bridge shackles on my harness; I'm not sure exactly when... sobering. I use Locktite now.

That's one of my fears. I love the twisted clevis, but I don't like the un-fastened screw thingy. Is there anything else that works just as good and is safer than the common clevis????
I replaced the shackles with new ones and put locktite on the the threads, they've been solid for 4 or 5 months now.

The problem with mine was that I had removed and replaced them several times experimenting with custom bridges, the threads were worn.
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  • #22
Understood,, I'm just nervous because I take mine apart once monthly for washing my saddle. Each time I put it together, I put an end of an awl through the hole and crank it tight. Now I'm wondering when the day will come that I accidently strip it without knowing.... My next washing, I'll go get locktite for the added insurance-- thanks......
You can use a plastic zip tie to "wire" that clevis closed securely, and just snip it off when you want to clean and easy.