March 15, 2008

Tornado Appears, Damages Trees, and Leaves

A tornado touched down in downtown Atlanta, sometime between 9:30 and 10 PM, Friday night. As the city's residents go outside this morning to examine what happened, they may find that their beloved trees have been damaged or even toppled. So far the blogs and news sources are reporting that many trees came down onto houses and cars.

Like the tornado of 1998, north of Atlanta in Dunwoody, trees will need to be cleared from roads and taken off houses over the next few weeks. Many more trees, that are still standing, have suffered partial or non-catastrophic damage. All tree owners should take the time over the next week to examine their trees for the following:
- A new, or aggravated, lean
- Broken, hanging branches teetering in the tree canopy
- Large cracked limbs still attached to the trunk
- Broken roots near the soil surface
- Heaving or mounding soil near the base of the tree

If there is any question as to whether these failures are hazardous, a qualified tree risk assessor should be contacted to inspect the storm damage. Most practicing certified arborists can make a good call in these cases. Tree consultants at Onebark specialize in storm damage assessments. Member companies of the Georgia Arborist Association are a good resource for tree restoration services.

Trees that pose an imminent danger to people and essential property are always a priority for cleanup, and most tree services will be concentrating on making things safe, rather than cleaning up messes. Tree services have many customers that rely on them in emergencies. Those who have debris in their yard or that need branches pruned over low-use areas will usually be low on the priority list. If you have low-priority tree damage, be patient! It will all get cleaned up soon.

1 comment:

MikeB said...

There are two types of tree services:
The people who do the cleanup after the damage and the people that access the trees after the cleanup.
If you need just clean up get a quote before the job.

If you want an accessment hire someone that specalizes in this and remember, you get what you pay for. You may think that someone is cheaper and they offered the service to remove a tree. However if you hired a professional you may not have had the expense of removing the tree.