Absolutely, positively, without a doubt this has been hands down the most awesome thing any of us at Arbormax Tree Service have ever been involved with. We had the honor and privilege of training the amazing men and women of the Army National Guard’s 105th Engineer Battalion on the fundamentals of chain saw safety, saw maintenance operations, and reactive forces. Over the course of five days in March, with nine classes, we trained approximately 150 soldiers. These courageous soldiers not only defend and protect our nation overseas, they also are ready and prepared to help us state side when things get tough and we need them most right here at home. The annual training of the battalion, arranged by the Army National Guard, lasts about two weeks and covers many scenarios that these troops may encounter during a state of emergency following a natural disaster.
Chances are, if you have been to an area effected by a major hurricane, ice storm, tornado, or other natural disaster, you have seen the Guard out in full force. They are always there without fail, whether passing out essential supplies to the community, maintaining peace and order, or, yes, with a chain saw in hand cutting their way into the devastation to help someone. All of us at Arbormax Tree Service, a TCIA member company based in Raleigh, North Carolina, are grateful for the service and commitment of these troops. We could think of no better way to show our gratitude than by training them to stay safe while operating one of the most deadly hand-held tools known to man, as well as making sure they truly understand how all of the saw’s components function to create a more efficient, and safer saw. This was a responsibility we did not take lightly. Between the three of us, Dick Pilcher, Joseph High II, CTSP, and myself Tim Robbins CTSP, we have more than 40 years of combined field experience. Two of us are Certified Treecare Safety Professionals and Certified Arborists, and the other is a certified tree climber. Combining years of experience and countless hours of homework and research, we developed a comprehensive program that allowed the soldiers to be directly engaged every step of the way
Starting with a solid foundation of the fundamentals and using hands-on training, the course we offered focused on realworld situations that these soldiers encounter after disasters. Some of these soldiers had never operated a chain saw, but they all walked away with the skills and a true understanding of the tool that would allow them a greater sense confidence to safely operate and care for the saw. Even those who had experience operating a saw before seemed to take a lot away from the program, telling us that we corrected some bad habits and work practices that had been in place.
We had to post these awesome pictures and a brief description. But to be honest, a million of these pictures and two million words couldn’t convey just how amazing this experience was. What else can we say. I guess in the words of these heroes. Hoooaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!