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Health and Safety

Small Scale Forestry Safety Guidelines



  • Safetree™ is your one-stop resource to find the safety information you need to do your jobs safely and without injury.
  • Safetree™ provides resources to you at all levels of the industry to remind you how to do your jobs safely.
  • Safetree™ targets information at forest owners and managers, contractors, foremen, head breaker outs, breaker outs, tree fallers, hauler and machine operators, and silviculture workers.

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Worksafe New Zealand

Approved Code of Practice for Safety and Health in Forest Operations (ACOP)

This Approved Code of Practice (ACOP) offers practical guidance to everyone engaged in work associated with forestry on how they can meet their obligations under the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992 and its associated Regulations. The ACOP applies to forest operations including planning, establishment, silviculture, harvesting and transportation of log and log products.
Download: ACOP: Safety and Health in Forest Operations (PDF 1.6 MB)

Roles and responsibilities of principals and contractors

This amendment to the ACOP for Safety and Health in Forest Operations (ACOP) was developed for principals and contractors involved in forest operations, and gives advice on how they can fulfil their duties under the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992 (the Act).
Download: Approved Code of Practice: Safety and Health in Forest Operations - Roles and Responsibilities of Principles and Contractors (PDF 711 KB)


Managing a safe and healthy small forest harvest
These guidelines provide owners of small forests with practical advice on managing a harvest safely and healthily.

Woodlot harvesting on farms
Many farms have small stands of planted trees (woodlots). A safe and productive harvest requires good planning and communication.

Introduction to the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015
March 2016

A Different Kettle of Fish: Small and medium scale forests
November 2016
This report discusses the specific issues faced in small-scale forestry and the differences between harvesting woodlots and farm forests, and large, industrial forests.

Safety during tree felling
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.


Employment New Zealand

Health and safety at work »
A brief introduction to health and safety in the workplace.


Tree Grower articles



  • The Forest Industry Safety Council What is it up to? June 2016
    On March 16 at the Forestwood conference in Auckland, on behalf of NZFFA, I signed the charter for the Forest Industry Safety Council. This was signed on behalf of the…
  • Forestry deaths should strengthen industry’s resolve to work harder on safety March 2016
    The deaths of four workers in the past three months is a sad reminder that the forestry industry still has much work to do to improve its safety performance, the…
  • Small scale forestry safety guidelines January 2016
    The NZ Farm Forestry Association, with support from the Forest Growers Commodity Levy, has just produced guidelines to help growers comply with current health and safety legislation as it applies to…
  • Forest safety council underway February 2015
    The forest industry has established a safety council to make forests safer places to work. This was a key recommendation of the Independent Forestry Safety Review Panel that reviewed forest…
  • Independent Forestry Safety Review Final Report available October 2014
    Since 2008, 32 lives have been lost on the forest block.  The forestry industry is the most dangerous industry in which to work in New Zealand.  The injury rate is…
  • Media release: Forest owners want people to speak up June 2014
    The sponsors of the Independent Forestry Safety Review welcome the public consultation document issued by the review panel on Friday. ”It poses a series of questions which will provide a…
  • Major forest industry safety review launched January 2014
    An independent panel is to conduct a major review into the high number of serious and fatal injuries in the forest industry. The panel members are business leader George Adams,…
  • Forest Owners support official scrutiny December 2013
    Recent assessments of forest workplaces by MBIE (Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment) and ACC have the full backing of the Forest Owners Association. “Regulation is not the only way…
  • Forest owners ask critics to help November 2013
    Forest owners are asking politicians, unionists and commentators to help them solve the industry's safety crisis and to stop making political capital out of tragedy. “We are all agreed –…


Farm Forestry - Headlines

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