A lesson in safe tree-trimming

Take precautions when using chainsaw

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Q: I am a female homeowner; I love trees and have many all around my yard. I would like to use a chainsaw for some of my pruning; however, my guy friends caution me about using it, telling me stories about how dangerous they are. I don't want to be all girly about this, but what's your opinion? I've never really had any safety lessons on chainsaw use. Is there something safer that would do the job? Right now, I just hire the pruning to be done every year. --Jillayne S. A: Chainsaws, like any cutting tool, are dangerous if not handled properly. That doesn't mean you need to be afraid to use one, just that you need to exercise caution and common sense -- whether your are male or female! Chainsaws have an exposed cutting chain with highly aggressive teeth, and their length and weight can throw an operator off balance. Cutting often takes place in wooded areas or other areas with unstable footing, adding to the danger. The other thing about chainsaws is the unpredictability of ...