Title: Field Testing a Remotely Operated Falling Wedge
Category: Changing Nature of Work and Work Environment
Subcategory: Changing Nature of Work and Work Environment
Manual tree falling continues to be very dangerous with a high ratio of serious injuries to total injuries. Many of the serious injuries and fatalities in manual tree falling are the result of objects falling from the canopy or cut trees striking the faller. Previously funded research developed and tested a prototype for a new manual tree falling tool, the Wood Duck, with the objective of removing the faller from the base of the tree before the tree begins to fall. This research will design modifications to the Wood Duck to improve its performance.
The overall objective of this project is to conduct an operational field trial using a new manual tree falling system that allows the faller to initiate falling of a tree from a remote position. Specifically this project will:
• redesign the Wood duck
• fabricate two prototypes based on the new Wood duck design including the wireless remote control for the drill driver
• determine the success rate of the new manual tree falling system (where success is defined as a tree that does not begin to fall before the Wood duck is actuated) under operational conditions where the faller is permitted to adjust the cut dimensions
• determine the change in productivity when using the new system as opposed to traditional manual tree falling methods
The results of this project will determine whether a modified Wood duck combined with the new system of falling cuts can be successfully applied by a faller working in operational conditions.
In the long term, use of the Wood Duck could lead to a significant reduction in serious injuries and fatalities by decreasing the chance of a tree faller being struck by objects falling from the forest canopy or by cut trees.
Kevin Lyons (University of British Columbia)