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CosmicPal
12-31-2005, 11:47 AM
http://www.denverpost.com/search/ci_3355433


Routine job turned horrific
Tree trimmer powerless to save boss caught in wood chipper
By John Ingold
Denver Post Staff Writer
DenverPost.com

Chad Swank was standing in the basket of a cherry-picker truck Wednesday afternoon, using a chain saw to trim branches from a large, dead tree at a house in Loveland.

His boss and longtime tree- trimming partner, Brian Ganiard Morse, was on the ground, feeding the branches into a wood chipper. It was nothing out of the ordinary for the pair, who were both certified tree trimmers and had worked on jobs together off and on for about six years.

Swank started to cut a branch, and, per his usual habit, looked down to make sure the area underneath was clear. That's when he noticed something was wrong.

He saw Morse lying on the hopper of the chipper. Puzzled, Swank said, he thought that Morse must have turned the chipper off and been working on the machine. Swank shut off his saw to check.

But the chipper was still running at full speed. And Morse, his legs motionless, was slowly being pulled into it.

"So many things go through your mind at that point," Swank said.

Frantic, Swank swung one leg out of the basket, then the other until he was hanging from the basket. He let go and fell about 15 to 20 feet.

He sprinted to the chipper, but he knew there was nothing he could do.

"It's one of those things I'm still kind of numb to," Swank said Thursday. "I don't know how to feel quite yet. ... It's one of those things where you don't believe what is happening is happening."

On Thursday, Morse's family and friends, fellow arborists and authorities tried to better understand an accident that has attracted so much attention for its pure shock value.

The Larimer County coroner's office conducted an autopsy, and, using fingerprints, they officially identified Morse, the 54-year-old owner of Brian's Tree Trimming and Removal Service in Loveland, as the victim.

Following the autopsy, the coroner's office released a statement saying the victim was pulled entirely through the chipper. "Total morselization" is how the statement put it.

Since there were no witnesses to the start of the accident, investigators are speculating that Morse got a glove caught in the chipper and couldn't get free.

"What took place before the glove got caught is what we're still trying to look into," said Dean Beers, an investigator with the coroner's office.

Beers said the chipper had a handle that, when activated, would reverse the movement of the chipper's feeder gears. It is unclear whether Morse could have reached the handle when the accident occurred.

Swank, as well as the owner of another tree service in Loveland, said Morse was exceptionally careful.

"He was a very good Christian man who always emphasized safety," Swank said. "It was an accident. We don't call them intentionals."

Even in an exceptionally perilous job such as tree trimming, the dangers of the wood chipper stand out, said Roy Barnhart, who owns Roy's Tree Service in Loveland and who knew Morse. The chipper in this accident, a Vermeer BC1250A, has the capacity to shred trees up to a foot in diameter, according to its manufacturer. It would probably take only a few seconds for the chipper's blades to turn such a tree into mulch, Barnhart said.

Meanwhile, the gears that grab branches and pull them toward the blades are unforgiving.

"The human body has no chance" if something gets caught, Barnhart said.

Morse leaves behind his wife, a son and two grandsons, about whom he talked constantly, Swank said.

Morse enjoyed jogging and had run several marathons.

Barnhart said Morse was something of a perfectionist.

"He was a man who loved his work," Barnhart said. "He was a man who was very particular in how he did things. That's why it's hard to understand how this happened, because he was very careful all the time."

Staff writer John Ingold can be reached at 720-929-0898 or jingold@denverpost.com.

JBucc
12-31-2005, 11:49 AM
Wow

jspchief
12-31-2005, 11:51 AM
Word of the Day: Morselization

Bwana
12-31-2005, 11:57 AM
Ouch!

stumppy
12-31-2005, 12:16 PM
Word of the Day: Morselization


MMmmmmmmm, morselization.

chiefsfaninNC
12-31-2005, 01:18 PM
Must of been a Donk fan.

Baby Lee
12-31-2005, 03:37 PM
http://www.cineclub.de/images/1996/fargo.7.jpg
Tan Sierra!!!

SNR
12-31-2005, 04:21 PM
Now that's what I call a dicey situation

sedated
12-31-2005, 04:37 PM
Not sure if "Morselization" fits this situation...

mor·sel (môrsl)
n.
A small piece of food.
A tasty delicacy; a tidbit.
A small amount; a piece: a morsel of gossip.
One that is delightful and extremely pleasing.

JBucc
12-31-2005, 04:40 PM
Not sure if "Morselization" fits this situation...

mor·sel (môrsl)
n.
A small amount; a piece
It could be a piece of person, or a small amount of person

cdcox
12-31-2005, 04:43 PM
Not sure if "Morselization" fits this situation...

mor·sel (môrsl)
n.
A small piece of food.
A tasty delicacy; a tidbit.
A small amount; a piece: a morsel of gossip.
One that is delightful and extremely pleasing.

Its a technical term. Seriously.

BigMeatballDave
12-31-2005, 05:36 PM
She'll only come out at night
The lean and hungry type
Nothing is new, I've seen her here before
Watching and waiting
Ooh, she's sittin' with you but her eyes are on the door

So many have paid to see
What you think you're gettin' for free
The woman is wild, a she-cat tamed by the purr of a Jaguar
Money's the matter
If you're in it for love, you ain't gonna get too far

(Oh-oh, here she comes) Watch out boy she'll chew you up
(Oh-oh, here she comes) She's a maneater
(Oh-oh, here she comes) Watch out boy she'll chew you up
(Oh-oh, here she comes) She's a maneater

I wouldn't if I were you
I know what she can do
She's deadly man, she could really rip your world apart
Mind over matter
Ooh, the beauty is there but a beast is in the heart

(Oh-oh, here she comes) Watch out boy she'll chew you up
(Oh-oh, here she comes) She's a maneater
(Oh-oh, here she comes) Watch out boy she'll chew you up
(Oh-oh, here she comes) She's a maneater

Ooh,
(Oh-oh, here she comes) Here she comes, Watch out boy she'll chew you up
(Whoa-oh, here she comes. Watch out) She's a maneater
(Oh-oh, here she comes. She's a maneater) Ooh, she'll chew you up
(Oh-oh, here she comes) Here she comes, she's a maneater
(Oh-oh, here she comes. Watch out) She'll only come out at night, ooh
(Oh-oh, here she comes) Here she comes, she's a maneater
(Oh-oh, here she comes. She's a maneater) The woman is wild, woo
(Oh-oh, here she comes) Here she comes. Watch out boy, watch out boy
(Oh-oh, here she comes) Oh, watch out, watch out, watch out, watch out
(Oh-oh, here she comes) Yeah, yeah, she's a maneater
(Oh-oh, here she comes. She's a maneater) She's watching and waiting, ooh
(Oh-oh, here she comes) Oh, she's a maneater

Halfcan
12-31-2005, 05:51 PM
That is a horrible way to go.

siberian khatru
12-31-2005, 05:52 PM
Saw the thread title and thought this was about the Chargers game. Oh, well ...

Boyceofsummer
12-31-2005, 05:52 PM
you can only hope to contain him.

Sorry