Felling hazardous trees is exactly as it sounds – hazardous. There are many ways of bringing a tree to the ground safely; there are also many ways to safely remove a stump, but only with proper training, the right equipment, and an experienced team. While tree removal is a last resort, there are circumstances when it is recommended such as when the tree is causing an obstruction, causing harm to other desirable trees, or needs to be relocated or replaced by a more suitable tree.
What defines a ‘hazardous’ tree?
- the extent of the tree’s lean
- by what means the tree is hanging or if it is stuck on another tree or building
- whether the tree is alive, dead, or rotting
- the species and health of the tree
- whether the base of the tree and root system is solid
- the tree’s position in relation to other objects, people, vehicles, and roads
The removal of a hazardous tree means making a plan before a single cut is made. Heavy branches may be roped and lowered to the ground after cutting, for example. As each cut is made the plan is revised to fit the new situation. Cranes are often used to lift heavy sections of the tree when it is too dangerous to remove with conventional rigging methods.
A Case for Older Trees
The trees of Santa Barbara are an important part of the local history. Not only do these trees make our neighborhoods cooler and more beautiful, many are also a part of our history.
Its easy for people to believe that any tree with a significant defect must be felled, and unfortunately this is the route that many tree trimmers will take. A certified arborist, however, takes a more prudent and reasonable approach that may involve regular safety inspections, corrective action such as bracing and cabling, and careful pruning to keep an older tree healthy and in our community. The management of older trees means striking a balance of proper care and hazardous tree removal.
Tips for Preventing Hazardous Trees
It’s important to remember that a healthy tree that receives regular care is far less likely to become a hazard than a tree that has been ignored for decades. Some tips for hazardous tree prevention include:
- Get into a schedule of pruning your trees, starting when they are young
- Use correct pruning methods, not random topping and chopping
- Plant new trees in a good location, away from power lines and other property features
- Insist on root protection zones to ensure new landscape feature installations don’t sever the tree’s roots
Even high-value trees that are beginning to develop into a hazard can be risk-mitigated by keeping people and objects at a safe distance.
Expert Stump Removal
While removing a hazardous tree is a big project in itself, the removal of the stump is even more involved. It’s also the reason many people have old stumps in their yards. Old tree stumps take up valuable space and can become tripping hazards when surrounding plants obscure the stump’s presence. Some stumps are easier to remove than others, but for every stump, there is a proper technique that makes the job easier and safer in the long run and leaves your property in better condition than before. In the end, stump removal is an opportunity for you to gain more yard space, a new planting area, or even a place for a new tree.
The certified arborists at Mark Crane’s Tree and Arborist Services have access to lift equipment, technical rigging, and other tools that ensure they can safely remove tree hazards and stumps from your Montecito, Hope Ranch, or Santa Barbara property.