Responding Safely to Tree Damage From a Storm
Severe weather can impact your home and landscaping, especially your trees. Penetrating rains and tearing winds work together to soften the soil and uproot trees. Lightning strikes vaporize the water within the tree and this results in the wood splitting and bark exploding. During the height of the storm the failure of any part of one or more of your mature trees can cause a significant amount of damage to your property, utility lines, and it also runs the risk of causing injury. As a tree owner there are steps that you can implement to ensure you have a safe and effective response
As a tree owner you can follow these steps to help ensure a safe and effective response to tree-related storm damage:
- Assess the damage
- Take the proper safety precautions
- Resist taking care of it yourself
- Hire a Certified Arborist
Assess the Damage
Carefully evaluate your trees by asking these questions:
Are there any major limbs remaining?
Is the tree trunk broken?
Is at least 50% of the tree’s branches intact?
If you have answered yes to these questions then there is a good possibility that your tree(s) can have a full recovery. You should call a professional tree care company to evaluate the tree damage for you.
Take the Proper Safety Precautions
It is important that you consider the potential hazards with working on/around trees damaged in a storm.
- Storm damaged trees might come in contact with electrical lines. Direct/indirect contact can cause injury/death by electrocution.
- Broken limbs dangling overhead in the trees can fall and cause injury/death.
- Trees and limbs that are under tension can react when cut causing injury/death.
- Removing trees/branches that are close to power lines/structures requires proper knowledge and experience.
- Costly mistakes can lead to injury/death and property damage.
Resist Taking Care of It Yourself
You might be tempted to start the clean up yourself and remove downed limbs and to cleanup the debris. If there are large broken limbs chain saw and ladder work may be required and should be undertaken by professional tree care staff.
Hire a Certified Arborist
A professional arborist has the equipment and experience to take care of the task at hand safely.