If you have a dead or damaged tree on your property, cutting it down as soon as possible should be your number-one priority. Not only is it susceptible to diseases that can spread to healthier trees in the vicinity, but the risk of falling limbs or even the tree being uprooted poses a serious threat to innocent bystanders and your home.
Safety First Tree removal is not as simple as it seems. Even the smallest specimens can present quite a challenge, especially those that are located close to structures. Making sure the tree falls in the right direction and that the cutting process is controlled are both important, as this is the only way to ensure no one is going to get hurt.
Tips for Trimming and Removal Be extremely careful when working near power lines - Working on a tree in close proximity to an electrical line necessitates having two people on the job. To prevent potential injuries, have someone on the ground who can communicate clearly with the person doing the cutting. Given the heightened risk, these jobs are best left to professional tree trimmers, as they have the equipment and experience required to reach difficult areas.
Wear proper safety gear and know how to operate the machinery - Safety glasses, a hard hat, gloves and hearing protection save lives every day. The blow from a falling limb or the loudness of a chainsaw can cause immediate and long-term trauma. Never start a job without this gear.
Test the strength of limbs prior to climbing - Do not automatically assume a tree branch is going to support your weight; looks can be deceiving. A thick limb may appear structurally sound, but it may be rotted on the inside. Push down on the limb with sufficient force to test its breaking point. If you notice signs of cracking, avoid stepping on it.
Never assume the tree will fall in the direction you planned - Whether cutting a healthy or damaged tree, the trick is to do at the right angle. Gravity will eventually take over and the tree will begin to fall, but keep an eye it at all times to ensure it does not fall on you. Wind and offset cuts can cause the tree to lean in a different direction, thus resulting in a different landing spot.
Sources: http://www.72tree.com/tree-removal-atlanta.html http://ezinearticles.com/?Safety-First-for-TreeRemoval&id=8242730