Safety after a storm

I know safety is not thought of as a very exciting topic for many but last weekend the country (UK)was battered by strong winds. This resulted in damage at our club woodland and has prompted this quick post.
With trees coming into leaf, thanks to a very pleasant spring I guess it was inevitable there would be some damage from the gusts.

Storm damage

This is one example of what we have seen and was directly above one shooting peg. Sadly it was not the only example with another tree falling within inches of one target peg.
We were very fortunate as we had closed the wood for shooting whilst running a work day in preparation for upcoming events.
It’s really important to check your woods for any widow makers, these being branches hung up in trees and likely to fall at any point.

More storm damage, yes the bow was fine.

Other hazards can be from branches that have already fallen and are blocking paths or targets. Look out for those trees just off pathways and routes that may have been damaged too. We have a lot of holly bushes in our wood and these tend to support falling or fallen wood. This effectively makes it’s an accident waiting to happen and we have spent a lot of time checking and clearing them.
So, can I suggest that everyone check and double check their woodland. If you find yourself in a wood during such weather take particular care and be aware of your surroundings. As I said earlier we were working in the woods setting up new targets and there were several times we heard the cracking of wood. For this reason we worked in pairs ensuring no one person was left alone and therefore vulnerable if they did fall foul of a broken branch.
We’ve conducted a brief survey on Sunday and will be checking the woodland in more depth this weekend.
Stay safe and thanks for reading