Recognizing Tree Hazards

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Trees provide great benefits to our property and communities. However trees can become liabilities if they fall and can potentially injure people or property. Proper tree care, such as regular property assessments by a certified arborist, can make a property safer and help extend the life of the tree.

Tree Hazard Safety Assessment Services in Nova Scotia

Even though trees are an important part of our environment they can become dangerous or hazardous. Whole trees and limbs may fall potentially causing injury to people or property damage. It is the responsibility of home owners to provide for the safety of trees on his or her property. Regular tree care will help identify possible tree hazards.

How to Identify Tree Hazards

There are a number of things to look for when identifying tree hazards such as:

  • Large dead branches
  • Detached hanging branches
  • Cavities in the trunk or in major branches
  • Cracks or splits
  • Strong lean on trunk
  • Have roots been damaged or broken during construction?
  • Has the site been recently changed by construction, raising the soil level, or installing lawns?

Common Signs of Hazards or Defects in Urban Nova Scotia Tree Species

Some common signs of possible hazards or defects in urban trees are:

  • Regrowth form topping or line clearance
  • Electrical lines adjacent to the tree
  • Broken branches
  • Open cavities
  • Dead or dying branches
  • Many branches arising from a single point
  • Decay and rot in old wounds
  • Construction or recent changes in grades

Common Signs of Hazards or Defects in Rural Nova Scotia Tree Species

Some common signs of possible hazards or defects in rural trees are:

  • Recent site construction, grading, clearing of forests for development
  • Previous tree failure in area
  • Leaning tree near a target
  • Forked trunk, large stems of equal size
  • Wet areas with shallow soil.

Reduce Tree Hazards and Defects in Nova Scotia Tree Species

A few steps can be taken to reduce tree hazards such as:

  • Remove the target: targets such as picnic tables and cars can be moved.
  • Prune the tree: Hire a tree service to perform strategic tree pruning to remove defective branches
  • Cable & brace the tree: tree support systems can be added to increase support & stability
  • Provide regular maintenance: water, prune, fertilize and mulch as needed.
  • Remove the tree: trees get to a point when they become too hazardous and little can be done to decrease hazards. These trees should be removed. Arbor Plant Health Care’s tree removal services can help if your tree needs to be removed.

Recognizing and reducing tree hazards will increase the safety of your property and community and allow you to enjoy your trees for years to come.

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Published in: Tree School
Written on: Dec 23rd, 2006
Authored by: Arbor Plant Health Care

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