Forestry Services

Cedar block harvester
Forest service work includes cedar block harvesting.

Forestry services work occurs nationwide, yet is often hidden from the public eye. Injury and illness rates among workers in the forestry services industry are 2 to 3 times the rates of the average US worker, and fatality rates are 10 times as high. It can be dangerous work, with job tasks involving the use of chainsaws, falling and burning trees and branches, carrying and lifting heavy loads, and frequent awkward and repetitive motions. This industry manages forests for future harvest, reforestation, ecosystem management, and fuel management to prevent catastrophic wildfires.

Common injuries include broken bones, open wounds, severe poison oak rashes, and dehydration. The largely immigrant, Latino workforce in this industry is essential to US forest management, yet vulnerable because of documentation status, lack of English proficiency, low literacy, working in remote locations under contracted employment, and little skills training. 

Selected Articles & Resources


Image of Staying Hydrated Poster

Staying Hydrated at Work Poster

If you are thirsty, you are already dehydrated. Part of the Heat Illness Toolkit.

Forestry worker cutting brush

Reality Tales Videos: Injuries in the Woods / Videos historias reales: Lesiones en el bosque

Real worker injury stories, told in their own voice, 

Historias reales de lastimaduras de trabajadores, contadas con su propia voz.

Person wearing virtual reality headset

Virtual & Augmented Reality Training for Forestry / Capacitación con realidad virtual en el sector forestal

Chainsaw and fatigue safety training in English and Spanish. Seguridad con la motosierra y contra la fatiga.

PNASH Research