At Lewis Tree Service, safety is a way of life

Safety is one of our mission-critical values supported by a commitment from leadership at the highest levels of our organization.

At Lewis Tree Service, we are supersizing our culture of learning. Some of the highlights include breaking into groups to study Todd Conklin’s book Pre-Accident Investigations, proactively seeking serious injury potential “close call” stories to gather and share critical lessons that can keep others from getting hurt, building in thoughtful pauses in our work days to actively notice/manage risks and hazards, and changing the language around our After Action Reviews to include asking ourselves what surprised us the most and uncover what we learned.


What’s more, we’re challenging old norms including our leadership response to failures. We are lifting blame and empowering others. We are recognizing that our team members are not the problem but rather the problem solvers. Through all of this, we are learning a new language of safety in order to ensure we continue to build a culture of trust, learning and accountability.

In accordance with our shared values/operating principles, we are respectfully holding people accountable by engaging them to look forward to what must be done to repair, heal and improve. We’re focusing on what we do well in order to replicate the positive while gaining a better understanding of failure (i.e., deviation from an expected outcome). We are compiling and studying weak signals, error-likely situations, variability, ambiguity, mental models, and trade-off decisions.

We are on a mission-critical journey to embrace a new view of safety—and that’s exciting. Importantly, we’re happy to share our learnings. When it comes to safety, we’re all in this together.

Human Performance in Utility Tree Trimming

No exceptions. No compromise.

The safety of all our employees, customers, their employees and the public is a critical core value. We work continually to eliminate risk and improve safety practices, striving to achieve zero-incident safety results each day.

Lewis Tree adheres to a comprehensive policy and procedure manual. Compliance is overseen by our corporate and field safety specialists along with all operations managers in the field.

We are proud of our innumerable safety processes, procedures, and tools including:

  • Pre-job hazard surveys (i.e., job briefings)
  • On-the-job hazard awareness review
  • Weekly safety review calls
  • Weekly tailgates (e.g., scope changes, injury prevention, handrails and ladders, defensive driving, hazardous conditions, first aid, emergency guidelines, and more)
  • ASAP hot sheets (e.g., truck rollovers, seat belts, flu season, stopping distances, ticks, storm conditions, and more)
  • Action plans
  • Distracted driving/PACE program

Want to know the latest on safety? Check out our blog for articles on safety and more!

Lewis Tree Service crew in the field with safety gear

Nine to Know

360 Degree Walk Around – before moving any vehicle or piece of equipment, the driver shall conduct a 360 degree walk around and, where applicable, a spotter shall be in place before backing any vehicle or piece of equipment

Seat Belts – Employees shall wear seat belts at all times while operating or riding in a vehicle or piece of equipment so equipped

Work Zone Protection – Employees shall always use the required barriers and safety equipment to define the work area and make it safe and secure

Fall Protection – A full body harness shall be in proper use when working out of an aerial device

Minimum Approach Distance (MAD) – Employees shall maintain MAD at all times. This includes passing in between conductors, all tools and aerial devices

One Hand Chain Saw Use – Under no circumstance shall any employee one hand any chainsaw (aloft or on the ground)

Drop Zone Safety – All employees shall respect the drop zones and prescribed felling zone guidelines as spelled out in the LTS Safety and Training Manual

Chaps While Cutting on the Ground – Chaps shall be in use whenever saw operators are cutting on the ground. This includes those assisting the cutter within a ten (10) foot radius

Chipping with Harness – Employees shall not wear a full body harness while operating the chipper

Lewis Tree crew member using safety equipment to perform vegetation management tasks