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Tree trimmer dies in metro Phoenix under weight of palm fronds

MESA, Ariz. -- A tree trimmer has died after getting caught underneath heavy fronds on a palm in Mesa.

Fire Capt. Forest Smith said the man was unresponsive when firefighters arrived after being called Wednesday morning to a home where a trimming crew was working in the backyard.

Smith said the trimmer had used a belt and spikes to climb the tree and was about 35 feet up in the tree when he got caught by the weight of the fronds.

Smith said firefighters used a ladder truck to reach the body.

Cause of death wasn't immediately known, but Smith said the weight of fronds can suffocate a person.

The dead man's identity was not immediately released.

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