Palm Tree Kills Tree Trimmer

LOS ANGELES -- A tree trimmer crushed by a ring of palm fronds that slipped over him, pinning him to the roughly 70-foot tree, died Tuesday before Los Angeles firefighters could free him.

Firefighters sent about 9:25 a.m. to South San Pedro Street, near 48th Street, found the 23-year-old worker unresponsive, said d'Lisa Davies of the Los Angeles Fire Department.

The worker was in a harness 50-60 feet up the tree when a heavy, ring-shaped section of fronds came loose above him, Davies said. It took more than 90 minutes to get him to the ground, where he was pronounced dead, she said.

The man's name was withheld pending notification of his next-of-kin. Davies said she didn't know the name of the company for whom he worked.

The state Division of Occupational Health and Safety was expected to investigate the death.

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