In general these machines are not insulated and unless you have the correct training and certification to work around electrical apparatus then stay well away from overhead power lines. If in doubt call the local power supply company for advice.
Be aware of any legal and environmental restraints such as tree protection legislation and avoid disturbing any nesting birds or wildlife.
Check the machine prior to commencing work and check all safety features are working correctly
Wear the correct PPE: head, ear and eye protection; gloves (anti-vibration if possible); non-snag outer clothing; steel-capped boots with a heavy tread pattern on the sole for grip; chainsaw chaps or pants.
It is recommended that a safe working/ exclusion zone of at least 15m is maintained around the machine while in operation and any bystanders are prevented from entering this zone
Select a suitable site for fuelling and starting the machine as per the recommendations in the operator’s manual.
Keep a firm footing and ensure the worksite is kept clear of fallen limbs and offcuts as work progresses.
Before cutting, correctly assess the tension and compression in the wood to avoid trapping the saw.
Plan the sequence of operation and always reduce the weight of the branch gradually as you cut it into manageable sections.
Undercut the branch first and ensure that when making the top cut an overlap occurs to reduce the risk of tearing the bark past the branch collar. The resulting stub can then be cut back cleanly to the branch collar.
Ensure the hook on the underside is in contact with the branch about to be cut at all times where possible.
Always use the machine at an angle of less than 60 degrees from horizontal to reduce the risk of injury from falling timber.
Make sure the final cut is just on the outside edge of the branch collar.
Don’t forget that the primary task powered pole saws are intended for is the removal of lateral branches. It is almost impossible to make a correct pruning cut on upright growth and these normally result in a spear cut which will not be able to compartmentalise correctly.
It may also be useful to consider having a manually-powered pole saw, such as a Silky Saw, for use in conjunction with the engine-powered machine as this will allow for better positioning on some of the internal cuts made around the canopy.
If these steps are followed you should find greater operational efficiency and less downtime/damage to your investment and therefore more money on your bottom line.