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Author Topic: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree  (Read 7901 times)

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Offline Phorester

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5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« on: January 17, 2006, 10:43:43 PM »

Sunday there occured a horrible accident in our community.  A large tree had been uprooted behind a residence in high winds the day before.  The father was out in the yard cutting off limbs and bucking the tree from the top down toward the root ball.  Unknown to him, his 5-year old son had wandered out of the house and was playing in the hole behind the root ball out of sight.

At some point the father finally cut off enough weight from the tree trunk that it made the root ball heavier than the remainder of the tree still attached to it.  The remainder of the tree then sat upright back into the hole.  His son was pinned underneath the root ball as it slammed back into the hole.  He was trapped from the chest down, underneath the tree, face up in the hole.  His legs were folded back over his head, his feet resting on either side of his face. He also suffered a severe concussion on the back of his head.  Amazingly and unfortunately he was not killed instantly.  He lay in agony for a couple of minutes before he expired. It took a full size fire truck and 15 firemen to pull the top of the tree out of the hole to retrieve his body.

It doesn't matter why you are cutting up a tree, whether for a load of firewood, clearing fallen trees out of your yard, it doesn't matter. When you begin cutting that tree you immediately enter into one of the most dangerous professions in the United States.  You have become a logger.  Be careful.
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Offline Jeff

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2006, 10:54:13 PM »
This happens more then you think. I'll find it somewhere on here. Sounds almost identical to a previous case.
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Offline Jeff

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2006, 10:55:56 PM »
Just call me the midget doctor.
Forestry Forum Founder and Chief Cook and Bottle Washer.

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Offline Brad_S.

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2006, 11:14:54 PM »
Same thing happened in the town I live in about a decade ago after a microburst brought down trees in the area. I can't imagine a father having to live with that kind of guilt for the rest of his days.
"Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans." J. Lennon

Offline Tom

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2006, 01:05:22 AM »
My neighbor lost his dog this way. 

This story makes me so sad that can hardly stand it.
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Offline Steve

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2006, 01:40:16 AM »
Me too Tom. I can't imagine going through something like that. I don't think I am strong enough. :'(
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Offline isassi

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2006, 06:57:26 AM »
The 2 minutes after the boll fell in would be Hell on earth.....I went a gave my little girl a hug after reading that...she is asleep, but it made me feel a little better.  :(

Offline Max sawdust

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2006, 08:15:10 AM »
That is awefull :'(
Thanks for shareing the story.  It reminds me that I have very large Hemlock that uprooted to a 45 degree angle not to far from the house so my 3 year old does know where it is cause we have played on the top of the root ball.  My wife let him go under once, but we put a stop to that.  Tree has been this way for a long time.

When I take it down I will make sure the kids are in the house.

Thanks again for the reminder.
Max
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Online Jim_Rogers

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2006, 08:23:09 AM »
The father is not the only one who should feel bad, whoever was suppose to be watching the son should have seen him go outside......
So many times we hear about sad things like this on the news and it all comes down to lack of supervision by a parent....... or someone in charge of the kids.....
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Offline Burlkraft

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2006, 08:35:59 AM »
What a horrible story.

I feel so bad for the family...I can't even imagine.
Why not just 1 pain free day?

Offline Corley5

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #10 on: January 18, 2006, 10:21:36 AM »
It sends a chill down my spine just imagining it :( :'( especially when I'm the father of a soon to be 4 year old.
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Offline timberjack240

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #11 on: January 18, 2006, 04:31:47 PM »
thats not good to hear . people seem to wonder why when im runnin the skidder i knock em down now i gess i have proof to my reason of what happens. my paps nephew died that way. according to him he was pullin on it with a lawn mower when he was a kid and somethin happend and it pinned him and he suffocated . i know i wouldnt have wanted ot been the guy that was cuttin but hte was an honest accident the guy didnt know he wsas there the kid shouldnt have been there and whoever was watchin him shoulda kept him outta there.... but its still not a good situation

Offline rebocardo

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #12 on: January 18, 2006, 04:57:06 PM »
Thank you for the post, it really makes you think about all the things we do and take for granted. I feel so bad for the little guy, what a horrible way to die.


Online Paul_H

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #13 on: January 18, 2006, 05:01:12 PM »
I went a gave my little girl a hug after reading that...she is asleep, but it made me feel a little better.  :(

I did the same last night after reading this story.One daughter is 3 1/2 and the other is 5.

A real heartbreaker.
Science isn't meant to be trusted it's to be tested

Offline Texas Ranger

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #14 on: January 18, 2006, 06:13:54 PM »
Shoot, I called my 30 and 27 year olds just to hear them.  Heart aches in that little town in West Virginia.
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Offline Black_Bear

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #15 on: January 18, 2006, 08:15:01 PM »
Not a good situation whatsoever. The father may not have thought that such a thing could occur. I have seen plenty of root systems that do not budge once the tree is severed from the roots. But, the bottom line is that just being aware of inherent danger often prevents it. I feel for the guy and his family.

I believe that a majority of logging accidents occur from falling objects, but this same thing occurred to a friend of mine who was logging by himself (mistake 1) and who was cutting a cluster of blown over trees. He had his head and chest pinned under a root ball that was released (mistake 2). At first, when he attempted to get out, he couldn't. He does not know for sure how long he was under there, but adrenaline finally took over because he was thinking of his family. He finally got out with minimal damage, but he hasn't cut alone since.

On another side note, my uncle squished his son's and granddaughter's Jack Russell Terrier last fall. He was loading his Dodge ton truck, which has 4' wooden extensions on the sides to accommodate more logs, when one of the logs slipped off the truck and landed on the opposite side of the truck from the loader. He didn't think anything of it until he was fully loaded and was starting to strap his load. That poor dog was dead from a 10' long, 10" diameter yellow birch falling from 9'.

Be careful out there!

Offline maple flats

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #16 on: January 18, 2006, 08:36:13 PM »
This is why when I cut with my grandson helping, I have him stand back a long ways, farther than 2x the tree height and have him stand near a big healthy tree in case he needs to get behind it if something flys off as it crashes. He is also behind me and slightly to the side and he has the cell phone and knows how to use it. Logging is dangerous. I must admit however that I often cut alone. I study the tree and where i want it to fall, plan escape routes, but I realize I am taking a chance every time. So far not even a cut but the worst could happen at any time.
logging small time for years but just learning how,  2012 36 HP Mahindra tractor, 3point log arch, 8000# class excavator, lifts 2500# and sets logs on mill precisely where needed, Woodland Mills HM130Max , maple syrup a hobby that consumes my time. looking to learn blacksmithing.

Offline jon12345

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #17 on: January 18, 2006, 08:53:33 PM »
I wouldn't be able to live with myself.  My son is only a little over a year, and although he doesn't go outside by himself there are times I can't keep track of him.  If I was doing something dangerous I would make it clear to whoever was watchin him, that he is not to go outdoors or be near what I was doing.  I'm sure the farthest thing from this guys mind was that the rootball would fall back in the hole, but when it comes down to it, the person operating the saw is ultimately responsible for what happens.       :-\ 


maple flats, what felling method do you use?
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Offline Faron

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #18 on: January 19, 2006, 06:51:03 AM »
It would be awful to lose a child that way, with no way to help.  In my time as a volunteer firefighter, the worst situations I was ever invoved with were the deaths of young children.  You just have a hard time getting past the loss of someone so young, and the anguish of the parents.  My family is praying for those parents.
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Offline Max sawdust

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Re: 5-Year Old Killed By Tree
« Reply #19 on: January 19, 2006, 07:08:51 AM »
Logging is dangerous. I must admit however that I often cut alone. I study the tree and where i want it to fall, plan escape routes, but I realize I am taking a chance every time. So far not even a cut but the worst could happen at any time.

I often work alone too.  I carry a cell phone and do a lot of planning prior to cutting.  If something does not look right I move on and save it for a day I have help. 
Max
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