UNIT standard 6916

Demonstrate knowledge of the rules relating to chainsaw use


ppe for chainsaw operators

You must not operate a chainsaw unless you are wearing the right gear. All chainsaw operators MUST wear these SIX items of PPE

Head Protection

Hi-vis yellow or orange safety helmet. It might have mounted ear muffs or a visor

Ear Protection

You need Grade 5 ear protection. Ear muffs can be mounted on a helmet. Some people also wear ear plugs

Eye Protection

Glasses or a mesh visor will protect your eyes from flying objects such as wood chips


High-Vis Clothing

Fluorescent yellow or orange clothing only is accepted in Forestry. It may also have silver reflective strips


Leg Protection

Chainsaw chaps are full of ballistic fibers that get caught by the chain to quickly stop the engine prevent cuts to the leg


Foot Protection

Boots with foot and ankle support, good grip and steel toe caps. 


Required PPE Items

Starting Your Chainsaw

PPE Memory game

This game will help you remember the SIX PPE items that you must have on before starting up your chainsaw

Just CLICK on the ManaiaSAFE cards until you pair up all six items


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The approved code of practice

The Approved Code of Practice for Safety and Health in Forest Operations contains the rules people in the bush need to follow to stay safe. It has rules around chainsaw use, refuelling chainsaws, PPE and much more.

If you have not been sent your PDF copy yet, be sure to download it from the “Resources” section in our eLearning Platform

Click here to download the ACOP





acop snippets

Below are some important parts of the ACOP pertaining to PPE, chainsaw use and first aid



This code has been prepared by representatives of the forestry industry and the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE). The purpose of this code is to provide practical guidance to employers, contractors, employees, and all others engaged in work associated with forestry, on how they can meet their obligations under the Health and
Safety in Employment Act 1992 and its associated Regulations.




2.6.1 No employee shall work in a manner likely to cause harm to themselves or others.
2.6.2 Employees have a right to refuse to undertake work that they
consider likely to result in serious harm.






4.2.5 Only approved starting methods shall be used. These are:
›› cold start (saw on the ground)
›› warm start (saw on the ground or step-over method).
When starting a chainsaw the operator must maintain three points
of contact with the saw.
Note: For starting/using a chainsaw off the ground, see the
Approved Code of Practice for Safety and Health in Arboriculture.



4.2.6 A chainsaw shall not be used if:
›› any safety device is inoperable
›› the saw chain does not remain stationary when the motor is idling
›› the saw will not idle correctly
›› the cutter bar, handles or controls are loose
›› any parts are damaged, missing or ineffective.




your first aid kit

Every work area and work vehicle must have a fully stocked first aid kit.

Chainsaw operators must also carry at least TWO large sterile WOUND DRESSINGS or HAEMOSTATIC GAUZE PADS

Be sure that these are sealed so they are clean and sterile, and ALWAYS have them on you. They may just save your life



2.2.1 Where crew work is taking place, there shall be a minimum of two crew members available onsite with a current first aid certificate. Persons working alone shall hold a current first aid certificate. Reference: Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment guidelines First Aid for Workplaces – A Good Practice Guide.

2.2.2 A clearly marked first aid kit shall be kept: › in each work vehicle › at each work area. Note: Vehicle kits can substitute for those required at a work area, provided the vehicle remains at the work area.

2.2.3 All first aid kits shall be kept fully stocked, and stored so as to ensure contents are protected against contamination.

2.2.4 Chainsaw operators (except those working on a skid site) shall carry on their person at least two large sterile wound dressings or haemostatic gauze pads protected against contamination by dust, heat, moisture or any other source.




In logging, chainsaws are used for felling and delimbing trees on a skid site
They are an extremely effective tool for getting the job done – However they can become extremely hazardous if you don’t follow the rules.

Good training and supervision, knowledge of the chainsaw rules and the right PPE will reduce the likelihood of an accident and increase the chance that you go home safe to your family at the end of the day.



 Check out the Video below to learn about the Safety Features of a Chainsaw. The video is Interactive and will test your listening skills along the way!


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get to know the chainsaw safety features

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* Make sure you stick to the Manufacturers specifications when doing chain maintenance.

 * ALWAYS check that the Chain Brake is working properly before you start work.

* Check your chainsaws Antivibration mounts every week to ensure you do not begin to fatigue early and to prevent yourself from getting white finger. 


* DO NOT use your chainsaw above shoulder height. You will have less control, you’re vision may be restricted and chance of kickback is increased.

 * DO NOT maintain your chainsaw while the motor is running. This is extremely dangerous. It is however OK to run the motor when the carburettor needs adjusting as it is required in this instance.

* DO NOT use your chainsaw while standing on stockpiled, stacked ir heaped logs. Your footing will be unstable and logs can shift and roll.