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Safer forest harvesting

[image] Safer Forest Harvesting Project.

WorkSafe New Zealand is committed to reducing serious harm and fatalities in the forestry sector.

WorkSafe New Zealand’s Safer Forest Harvesting Project is part of the Forestry Sector Action Plan and focuses on reducing the injury and fatality rates in breaking out operations.


WorkSafe NZ's Forestry Safety Review submission

The forestry industry has set up an Independent Forestry Safety Review to consider ways of bringing down the high death and injury toll on workers in our forests. The Review presented a discussion document for stakeholder feedback. This is WorkSafe New Zealand’s response. It describes the regulator’s view of the current issues in the industry, proposes that an industry-led Safer Forests Blueprint for Action should be developed and describes the role WorkSafe will play in addressing the death and injury toll. It then responds to specific issues raised by the Review. The Review panel is likely to complete its work and release its conclusions in the near future.


These web pages give information about how to work safely in forest operations, including the 2012 Approved Code of Practice for Safety and Health in Forest Operations, the Safe Manual Tree Felling Best Practice Guidelines and related information.

The Safe Manual Tree Felling Best Practice Guidelines have been developed by WorkSafe NZ for principals and contractors involved in tree felling operations. The guide offers some advice on managing the key causes of harm in manual tree felling.

This guide is a practical way of meeting the requirements of the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992 (the Act), and the recommendations in the Approved Code of Practice for Safety and Health in Forest Operations.


A multi-faceted approach is the most effective course of action to change behaviour and reduce the work toll. Employers, employees, and contractors must understand their obligations under the Health and Safety in Employment Act and WorkSafe NZ must ensure that all parties are acting appropriately (and holding those who are not to account).




If you have any questions please email WorkSafe New Zealand, or call 0800 030 040.


Last updated 25 October 2016

Distribution of the Approved Code of Practice

If you have not received a copy of the Code from your Forest Owner or from FICA, please email or phone 0800 030 040


On Monday 4 April 2016, the New Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 (HSWA) came into effect.

HSWA repeals the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992, with immediate effect.

All references to the 1992 Act on this website and within our guidance will be progressively removed.