Trees provide significant benefits to our homes and cities, but when trees fall and injure people or damage property, they are liabilities. Taking care of tree hazards makes your property safer and prolongs the life of the tree. Trees are an important part of our world. They offer a wide range of benefits to the environment and provide tremendous beauty. However, trees may be dangerous. Trees or parts of trees may fall and cause injury to people or damage to property. We call trees in such situations hazardous, to signify the risk involved with their presence. While every tree has the potential to fall, only a small number actually hit something or someone.
It is an owner’s responsibility to provide for the safety of trees on his or her property. Some of the common defects associated with tree hazards are outlined here. However, evaluating the seriousness of these defects is best done by a professional arborist. Regular tree care will help identify hazardous trees and the risk they present. Once the hazard is recognized, steps may be taken to reduce the likelihood of the tree falling and injuring someone. Trees that fall into utility lines have additional serious consequences. Not only can they injure people or property near the line, but hitting a line may cause power outages, surges, fires, and other damage. Downed lines still conducting electricity are especially dangerous. A tree with a potential to fall into a utility line is a very serious situation.
Trees are assets to your home and community and deserve the best possible care. If you answered “yes” to any of the questions in the tree hazard checklist, your tree should be examined by a Certified Arborist.