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Manual tree felling is one of the highest risk activities in forestry, and mechanised or machine-assisted felling is a safer alternative method. However, every kind of felling carries a degree of risk, and that risk should be assessed and managed.

We have produced guidance on tree felling.

Safe manual tree felling 

This provides guidance on how to safely carry out manual tree felling while managing key causes of harm.

Safe manual tree felling 

While this guidance has not been updated to reflect current work health and safety legislation (the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 and regulations), it may still contain relevant information and practices to keep workers and others healthy and safe.

Please read this guidance in conjunction with all relevant industry standards that apply to you as a PCBU. This guidance will be progressively reviewed and either updated, replaced with other guidance, or revoked.

Machine-assisted felling using a grapple

This factsheet provides guidance on good practice when performing machine-assisted tree felling using a grapple.

Machine assisted felling using a grapple (PDF 432 KB)

Winch-assisted harvesting on steep slopes

This factsheet provides guidance on good practice when performing winch-assisted harvesting on steep slopes.

Winch-assisted harvesting on steep slopes (PDF 61 KB)