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What Does it Take to Be a Faller?

Occupation Description Use axes or chainsaws to fell trees using knowledge of tree characteristics and cutting techniques to control direction of fall and minimize tree damage.

Faller Responsibilities

  • Split logs, using axes, wedges, and mauls, and stack wood in ricks or cord lots.
  • Maintain and repair chainsaws and other equipment, cleaning, oiling, and greasing equipment, and sharpening equipment properly.
  • Place supporting limbs or poles under felled trees to avoid splitting undersides, and to prevent logs from rolling.
  • Clear brush from work areas and escape routes, and cut saplings and other trees from direction of falls, using axes, chainsaws, or bulldozers.
  • Measure felled trees and cut them into specified log lengths, using chain saws and axes.
  • Work as a member of a team, rotating between chain saw operation and skidder operation.

What a Faller Should Know

Below is a list of the skills most Fallers say are important on the job.

Operation and Control: Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

Operation Monitoring: Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Types of Fallers

  • Feller Operator
  • Feller Buncher Operator
  • Paper Wood Cutter
  • Bucker
  • Groundperson

Faller Job Outlook

In the United States, there were 7,500 jobs for Fallers in 2016.

Faller jobs are decreasing by a rate of -16.2%. This means the total job opportunities are shrinking. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a loss of -1,200 jobs for Fallers by 2026. The BLS estimates 800 yearly job openings in this field per year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Fallers in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Fallers are Maryland, Oregon, and Kentucky.

Watch out if you plan on working in Georgia, North Carolina, or South Carolina. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

What is the Average Salary of a Faller

The typical yearly salary for Fallers is somewhere between $27,080 and $78,500. The median salary for this occupation is $44,080.

Salary Ranges for Fallers

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for jobs of this type in different U.S. states.

Annual Mean Salary by State
State Annual Mean Salary

Oregon

$67,560

Washington

$66,870

Montana

$65,560

New York

$63,040

Alaska

$59,680

California

$56,720

North Carolina

$56,500

Arkansas

$55,050

Indiana

$53,620

Texas

$50,220

Mississippi

$48,700

Massachusetts

$45,480

New Hampshire

$45,240

Minnesota

$45,010

Alabama

$44,320

Idaho

$43,170

Georgia

$42,570

Virginia

$42,120

Maryland

$41,480

Vermont

$40,810

Missouri

$39,910

Louisiana

$39,320

West Virginia

$38,620

Tennessee

$38,020

Michigan

$36,670

Pennsylvania

$33,170

Colorado

$29,650

Ohio

$29,130

What Tools do Fallers Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Fallers:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Office
  • BCS Woodlands Software Woodlands Tracker

How do I Become a Faller?

What education is needed to be a Faller?

Faller Degree Level

How Long Does it Take to Become Faller?

Faller Work Experience

Who Employs Fallers?

Faller Sectors

Other Jobs You May be Interested In

Those thinking about becoming Fallers might also be interested in the following careers:

  • Helpers–Extraction Workers
  • Heat Treating Equipment Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

References

Bureau of Labor Statistics

College Factual

O*NET Online

Image Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons

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