Arborists are professional workers in the field of planting, cultivating, managing and studying of individual trees. This is different from the job of silvicultuists, who manage forests or loggers who harvest trees from forests.
Because an arborist spends considerable time climbing and working in trees, the job is considered hazardous. In most countries, the federal government and regional or state government will have safety laws and rules governing the safety equipment required for an arborist to perform their duties.
This safety equipment is generally referred to as arborist climbing gear
. Some of the gear an arborist utilizes are, climbing helmets, carabiners, double braid rope, single braided rope, climbing spurs, saddles or harnesses, ascenders, descenders, tree anchors and various types of pulley systems. When arborists work high in trees near electric power lines, there are additional safety equipment requirements.
Of all the equipment listed above the minimum arborist climbing gear that must be used is braided rope, carabiners, climbing helmets and climbing spurs. Failure to use this equipment exposes the arborist to serious injury or worse. If injured on the job and found not to be using required safety equipment, most insurance or workmen’s compensation programs will not help cover the cost of recovery.
There are many types of climbing ropes. Some are durable and strong while others have extra strength and standard durability under repeated climbing conditions. Double braid rope provides both the best durability and highest strength possible in a climbing rope. These type of ropes are harder to splice together but arborists consider that a fair trade off for the extra strength and ability to last a long time.
is a secure form of connector. Connectors are vitally important in climbing work. Once a connection is made with a carabiner the worker will not need to think about that connection again, until he undoes the connection. A carabiner can be made of aluminum or steel.
used by arborists are important for several reasons. They protect the head of the worker, while keeping it ventilated. Often, for times when working in low light conditions, the helmet is important to anchor helmet lights to aid the worker in the dangerous conditions of being in the tree. The helmet often has a four-point connection to a head harness that keeps the helmet securely fastened. This allows the helmet to be unobtrusive and not something the worker must think or worry about while working. A standard hard had is not sufficient for use by arborists.
This safety equipment makes climbing a tree easier, but often the spurs can severely damage a tree. Usually this equipment will be utilized when the tree is to be removed, or in an emergency.
All of this equipment can be sold as one climbing kit but often comes as the single item. The importance of using the correct safety climbing equipment
cannot ever be over stated.