Some tree-trimming companies are reviewing their safety procedures after the death of a 71-year-old tree trimmer in Kailua last week.
The medical examiner said the man died of internal bleeding in the chest after a coconut tree fell on top of him.
Fifita Misi was at the top of the full grown tree when its roots became dislodged, police said. He fell 30 to 40 feet and was crushed by the tree.
Misi's co-workers lifted the tree off of Misi but he died at the Castle Medical Center, police said.
"It's sad to hear about it. Every accident, you always look at your safety procedures. You try to make it better,? said tree trimmer Siaosi Tongotea.
Tongotea is a foreman with HTM Contractors and he?s been trimming trees for 20 years. Tongotea said his tree trimmers always walk around the tree and visually inspect it before climbing it.
They also use a 3-foot metal instrument that is stuck into the tree?s base to gauge its condition.
"And if it goes more than a foot then you know there's a problem with it,? Tongotea said.
If a coconut tree's roots are above ground, the tree has been incorrectly planted, making room underground for trouble, Tongotea said.
"It's easy for insects and anything to get it. And that's how you get decay and rots and everything. Sometimes you see the decay, you know you can see a big hole. Most of the times you don't see it,? Tongotea said.
But he believes experienced tree trimmers can often determine the condition of a tree by simply climbing it.
"When you poke up a tree and you're going up, you can feel it when you're on the tree. Like sometimes you can hear a crack. You when you hear that, that's a sign to run down,? Tongotea said.