2013 Summary

Safety Alert Type: 
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
Company Name: 
BC Forest Safety Council
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Forest Harvesting Fatality Summary

In 2013, the industry experienced 11 worker fatalities; the same number of fatalities experienced in 2012.

Four truck drivers and three equipment operators lost their lives at work this past year. This is an increase for these occupations when compared to 2012.

The manual tree falling sector experienced one faller fatality this past year compared to four in 2012.

The forest industry has recognized the overall upward trend and the following industry groups are working hard on eliminating serious injuries in these specific sectors:

  • The Coast Harvest Advisory Group - Coastal logging operations
  • Transportation Advisory Group and Log Truck Advisory Committee – Log truck operations
  • Falling Technical Advisory Committee – Manual tree falling
  • BC Safe Silviculture Program – Tree planting and other silviculture operations


The BC Forest Safety Council will be working with these groups and others to develop strong programs that will help prevent fatalities and send workers home to their families, uninjured and healthy, every day.

2013 Fatalities:

January 7 - An empty logging truck heading east on Highway 16 collided with the trailer of a loaded lumber transport truck heading west that had jack-knifed. A third transport truck collided with the accident scene. The operator of the empty logging truck later succumbed to his injuries.

April 8 - An off highway log truck driver suffered fatal head injuries while attempting to cut two logs with a chainsaw, the two logs had fallen from the top of the load and were suspended in the binders.

May 27 - A grader was grading uphill on a gravel road with a 10 percent slope, preparing for a logging operation. For an unknown reason, the grader reversed out of control and proceeded down the slope backwards. It is believed that the operator exited the grader while it was travelling backwards and was subsequently crushed by the grader blade.

June 11 - A worker was using a front-end loader to move a large fuel tank across a 24-percent sloped portion of the access road to a barge landing. The machine rolled onto its side, throwing the worker out the door and resulting in fatal crush injuries.

July 30 - While the load on an off-highway (fat truck) log transporter was being wrapped, two logs fell from the load. One of the logs was found on top of the driver, who succumbed to his injuries.

August 19 - A worker was operating a grader on a Forest Service Road when the grader went off the road and into a lake. The worker was deceased at the scene.

August 26 - A certified manual faller was falling a 17-inch-diameter alder tree. As the larger tree fell, a smaller alder tree (10 inches in diameter), located behind the falling face, broke at the 28-foot height. The broken portion of the tree struck the faller, inflicting a fatal injury.

October 21 - A worker was cutting a blowdown cedar tree into shake blocks within old-growth timber, a mix of blowdown and standing trees. A standing hemlock uprooted, causing a chain reaction of live and dead trees falling down towards the worker. The worker was struck by a portion of a tree and sustained fatal injuries.

October 24 - A pilot was trying to maneuver a floatplane into position to land when it crashed onto a small island. The pilot and the two passengers did not survive the crash.

November 7 - The tractor of a loaded cut-to-length logging truck went off the side of the first section of a single-lane bridge. The tractor came to rest on the driver's side of the cab. The operator was found on the ground under the cab.

File attachments
2013 Fatality Alert Summary.pdf

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