Health & Safety training
HAVS Awareness and Innovation Day

HAVS Awareness Day

Practicality Brown hosted a ‘HAVS Awareness and Investigation’ day. This initiative was driven by Fusion JV to look at whether the risk of Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS) can be reduced within the land and vegetation clearance industry.

What is HAVS

Workers whose hands are regularly exposed to high levels of vibration may suffer from a variety of work-related injuries to the hands and arms, including impaired blood flow and nerve damage. Collectively the injuries and the symptoms they cause are known as HAVS, also known as “White Finger”.

Reducing HAVS risk

Whilst much of the risk of HAVS has been removed by mechanising vegetation works, we still have the need to use chainsaws within the industry. Practicality Brown use Dymax Tree shears; 10” on 8-tonne excavators, 14” on 14 tonne and a 16” on 21 tonne, which are optimum for vegetation clearance, however, the diameter of the cut is limited. Chainsaws still need to be used to; cut large diameter material, in locations inaccessible for plant and where mobilisation of large equipment is uneconomical.
If large sections of timber are felled by chainsaw then further cutting can be kept to a minimum as excavators with tree shears, selector grabs or wood crackers, forestry forwarders and whole tree chippers can be used to process the timber. We would not expect any Practicality Brown chainsaw operator to get close to HAVS exposure limits during our clearance operations.

Awareness Day

This event aimed to highlight, increase awareness and investigate how tool manufacturers are helping to further reduce the risk of HAVS with the release of new equipment.

Practicality Brown was joined by Fusion JV, HS2 Ltd, Stihl, Husqvarna and VP plc who provide a HAVi monitoring system.

After presentations from Practicality Brown and Fusion, Stihl and Husqvarna exhibited and discussed new models of chainsaw including new petrol injected and battery-powered models. The different saws were used in a live demonstration whilst being monitored for their HAVS outputs. This revealed some interesting results which we will report on in the near future..

Here at Practicality Brown, health and safety and occupational health are our number one priority and want to provide the best possible working conditions for our employees. Awareness days like this will hopefully help to drive and improve industry standards for HAVS.

Tree Surgeons
Expanding our Land Clearance Expertise

Practicality Brown Limited have recently acquired the commercial business of Midland Tree Surgeons Ltd, which reinforces its position as a leader in the land clearance industry.

Midlands Tree Surgeons (MTS) founded and managed for over 40 years by Robert Kennedy, until his recent retirement, has a strong reputation for professionalism and reliability in the development site clearance business, which we have every intention of continuing. We look forward to expanding our Midlands tree and vegetation clearance activities, with locally based expertise and resources.

Skilled tree surgeon

Extending our expertise

Managing Director Alastair Beddall announcing the purchase of MTS said

“It was a perfect fit, there are many similarities in the way we manage our business and in our high customer satisfaction ratings. We have worked closely together on several large tree clearance contracts in the Midlands area and the purchase of Robert’s company made commercial sense”.

 

Whilst the existing MTS telephone, website and email addresses are being maintained, all new enquiries are welcome at midlandtreesurgeons@pracbrown.co.uk

Midland Office: 01295 690011 Iver | Head Office: 01753 652022 www.midlandtreesurgeons.co.uk

 

We operate our own compliant fleet of specialist mechanised resources including:

5  Dymax Tree Shears up to 16”

8 Mulchers up to 400hp

2 whole tree chippers both 550hp

stump grinders

excavator mounted winch

forestry forwarder

heavy duty flail mower

remote control tractor mulcher

2 tree spades and more.

PBL’s chainsaw teams are based regionally and wood chip produced is processed at our own wood fuel hub into premium grade biomass fuel.

 

Hedges successfully transplanted
Woodland Translocation

Woodland, Hedgerow and Tree Translocation

Practicality Brown has extensive experience of large scale woodland and hedgerow translocation and tree transplanting.

Woodland translocation: Hedges reduced for transplanting

Hedges reduced for transplanting

Woodland translocation: Low ground pressure machinery to transport woodland components

Low ground pressure machinery working in woodland

Woodland translocation: Optimal Tree Spade moving individual trees

Optimal Tree Spade moving individual trees

Woodland Translocation

Woodland translocation is carried out according to age and likelihood of re-establishment. The most common method involves coppicing of larger trees followed by stump translocation then woodland soil incorporating all mycorrhizal and seed/bulb bank. Care is taken to minimize ground impact, relocate soil horizons and habitat features. Occasionally smaller flora is individually containerized and transplanted according to best horticultural practice.

Hedgerow Translocation

Hedgerow Translocation is carried out according to age and species of hedge and the method best suited to acceptable level of re-establishment on the receptor site. Typically the hedgerow is coppiced, followed by transplanting using either a tree spade machine or by adapted excavator attachments. Successful translocation depends on good aftercare.

 Tree Transplanting

Individual tree moving involves complete tree and root ball translocation using a purpose built vehicle-mounted tree spade. Trees are moved individually from receptor to donor locations one at a time from receptor to donor locations.

Practicality Brown Experience

Practicality Brown is experienced in both woodland assessments, surveying for translocation and carrying out the works.  Any translocation work requires planning, management, operational expertise and aftercare; we have the experience and capabilities, having transplanted over 500,000 root ball stock over three decades.

Woodland Translocation Experience includes Channel Tunnel Rail Link (HS1), where extensive areas of coppice woodland were transplanted and road building projects such as A46 Widmerpool to Newark completed in 2012 where over 3km of hedge and 3ha was successfully translocated.

Translocation uses skills from across the company; our tree nursery staff have the horticultural knowledge, whilst our tree clearance division provides the management and innovation required to make it happen

Alastair Beddall, Managing Director, Practicality Brown

 

For more details, please contact Alastair Beddall or Phil Miller on 01753 652022

Stoke Common Restoration

Stoke Common Restoration

Practicality Brown prides itself on unrivalled customer satisfaction and long working relationships with a number of clients; one of which is the City of London Corporation. This organisation owns and manages some 5,400 Ha of open spaces in and around London. We have been working with them Read more

Forestry work at Centre Parcs, Woburn

After an 8 year planning process, Center Parcs opened a site at Woburn Forest to customers in 2014 and Practicality Brown undertook forestry work in the final stages. Previously a commercial forest, some trees were removed at the site to improve light levels on the forest floor and increase the biodiversity, allowing new species of plants to thrive.

Read more

Extensive mulching on A11 Road Scheme


Practicality Brown worked on the dual carriage scheme of the A11 in Norfolk, which involved cutting and mulching of 1000’s of tree stumps, day and night. Conditions where made worse by the extreme weather; excessive rain followed by heavy snow, however no day’s work was lost, particularly due to our determination to complete the project although the sandy soil might have helped. This important scheme brought a Read more

Satisfying Developers
Satisfying Developers

Satisfying Developers

Practicality Brown Ltd was approached by a regular developer client to carry out tree clearance on a newly acquired site prior to re-development. The programme included felling, processing and removing over 175 trees in a two day condensed contract, some of which had a girth exceeding 3m; our extensive range of machinery, trained and experienced operatives enabled the completion of this project, like many others, to time, budget and in accordance with the most stringent compliance measures.

Our tree clearance division operates UK wide, offering a fast and efficient service with a large fleet of no-burn tree clearance equipment, for any site clearance project in a range of environments on both brown field and green field sites.

Sensitive Vegetation Clearance

Sensitive Vegetation Clearance

Practicality Brown worked on the £380m road building project on the A46 Newark, over a number of months.

Some of the clearance included ecologically sensitive work such as stump grubbing in Great Crested Newt habitat. We worked closely with
main contractor Balfour Beatty Plc and ecologists from Scott Wilson to carry out the works thoughtfully using the right equipment at the right time.

Major road clearance
Major Tree Clearance A46 Nottingham and Newark

Major Tree Clearance A46 Nottingham and Newark

Practicality Brown were asked site clearance works on the A46 near Nottingham by Balfour Beatty plc.  It was no ordinary road scheme as there were tight deadlines with a short notice period and involved a team of 6 excavator mounted Tree Shears, whole tree chippers, timber forwarders, 3 crews of experienced tree climbers and chainsaw operators, and full time supervision. A letter Read more