Storm Damage Prevention

The winter season is setting in. The temperature drops and the wind picks up. Before you know it, it’s snowing and the real storm begins. With all the heavy rain, snow and ice, there is real danger of property damage. Trees are particularly vulnerable because of the saturated ground during these windy, snowy, and icy months .

When it comes to understanding your risks of storm-related tree damage, an assessment is always a good first step. As you and a professional walk around your lot, here are some things to look for:

  • Any tree branches that are already bending under their own weight. If you have a tree on your property that is already struggling under its own weight, its branches are likely to break once the weight of snow and ice is added.
  • Any tree with weak, dying, or dead branches. Broken, weak, dying, or dead branches are fall risks, especially in windy weather. These branches could fall on a person or property unless they are removed quickly and carefully. When removing damaged branches, its best to call a professional.
  • Any trees in heavily saturated soil. Roots in water-saturated areas have little securing them in the ground, especially during the rainy season when the soil becomes overly saturated. As the wind picks up, the tree is likely to fall over because these is nothing securing the roots and the weight of the tree.
  • Any tree within 20 feet of a building or in hard compact soil. In urban areas where the ground is hard and compact, trees that look healthy and vibrant really have shallow root systems and are likely to blow over with a little wind.
  • Any areas where branches meet the trunk. If there are any cracks or previous pruning wounds, these are potential fault areas where the tree is likely to break under stress.

Note: If a professional suggests topping one or more of your trees when they are assessing your lot, please take a moment to read our topping article “To Top or Not to Top” before making any decisions.</P.

While preventative pruning and thinning can reduce the likelihood of tree fall related storm damage, the only real way to assure there will be no damage is tree removal. You are always welcome to call us after the storm for emergency tree removal, but it is our desire to help you before damage occurs. Call us at 253.797.3621 to schedule a free quote.

Resources:

https://treedoctors.ca/how-to-protect-young-trees-from-wind-damage

https://www.bartlett.com/storm-damage.cfm

https://hort.ifas.ufl.edu/woody/stormy.shtml

https://extension.tennessee.edu/publications/Documents/sp575.pdf