A TREE worker lost their life just days before Christmas after being struck by a stem. 

Authorities have confirmed the unidentified worker suffered fatal injuries while dismantling a tree in an incident in the London area last month. No further details have been released and it's understood a full investigation is underway into the circumstances. 

Health and Safety Executive (HSE) chiefs have urged anyone involved in felling work to take the proper precautions. 

An incident bulletin read: "Falling trees, falling branches and falling sections of tree can kill or seriously injure people at work or passing by. 

"Any felling, branch removal or dismantling work must be carried out by a trained and competent person, usually a specialist tree work contractor." 

Tree surgeons and anyone involved in tree care are being urged to ensure:  
• the layout and organisation of the work area protects all parties from the risk of falling objects.

• exclusion drop zones are established and people are prohibited from entering the zone.
• exclusion zones are, where reasonably practicable, clearly marked, signed and guarded. 
• communication methods between arborist and ground person are robust and effective.

Additional resources may be required on site, such as lookouts, to help manage any risk associated with anyone possibly entering the work site, including the public.