“…the tree trimmer died after falling about 40 feet during work at a Waikiki resort…he landed on the pool deck at the Hilton Hawaiian Village…”
Barcelona was the fourth tree trimmer to die in the state since January 2011. Five died between November 2009 and November 2011, and three between January 2011 and July 2011…according to the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.
The Hawaii Occupational Safety and Health Division will investigate the death, which the medical examiner’s office said was an accident. Police do not suspect foul play.
In response to the spate of deaths, the state and the Aloha Arborists Association held a series of tree care safety workshops on Oahu, the Big Island and Maui, Kunstman said.
In November, the state recommended penalties of $10,000 for a Maui landscaping company after an investigation found one of the company’s tree trimmers fell to his death from a coconut tree while using a rusty line patched with duct tape. In September, a 71-year-old tree trimmer died after a coconut tree fell on him in Kailua.
The Kailua company’s owner, Wesley Jay, didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. Stasia Barcelona said her son looked up to his boss, who was very cautious, and dreamed of someday taking over the business.
According to the state Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, the company has a valid license in good standing. The hotel extended their condolences to the family in a statement.