Looking around your property and seeing trees that have been snapped like matchsticks or blown over and uprooted is disheartening. You know you’ll need to call a professional to clean up the mess, but there are still tips you can follow in the meantime to keep yourself, your home and your family safe.
Practice Tree Triage
After the storm is over, you’ll need to see which trees need to be dealt with immediately because compromised trees can be dangerous to people, pets and property. A tree that’s been completely uprooted can be left alone for the time being if it’s not blocking a walkway or driveway. Trees that are about to fall can be considered nonthreatening if they are a safe distance away from property or well-traveled areas. One caveat is that you should stay well away from the tree until you ascertain whether there are utility lines buried beneath it. Call your utility company to find out if there are utility lines where the tree is located.
Look for Damaged Branches
Look up at the top of your tree to see if there are any branches that have been split, broken or look precarious. If you see branches that meet these criteria, they must be removed. Removing these branches keep them from falling on your home, pets, people or vehicles. Damaged limbs also stress the tree and removing them lowers the risk of pests and infections. Never attempt to remove the branches on your own. Contact a licensed tree care specialist because one wrong move will cause a disaster such as property damage or severe injury.
Decide Whether to Remove the Entire Tree
The extent of the tree’s damage will determine whether you have it completely removed. A tree should be removed if lightning or some other force has split it in two, if more than half of its crown is broken or if it’s been damaged by storms before. A tree with a severe lean due to a storm also needs to be removed, especially if it’s leaning toward a structure. Never attempt to remove the tree yourself because doing so can be dangerous. Always hire professionals to remove trees, as they have the proper tools and training to do the job.
Remove Damaged Bark
If the storm has torn the tree’s bark, it needs to be removed. Bark that’s torn is subject to infestation by insects and fungi. Hire a tree care specialist to remove the bark because removing too much of the bark can damage the tree. A licensed tree care specialist will know how much tree bark to remove whereas a lay person may not.
Learn More About What to Do After a Storm
One thing you shouldn’t do is simply take on anyone who shows up with a chainsaw and offers to clean up your property. Storm clean-up needs to be done by a professional, and that’s where our arborists come in. Our experience has taught us to assess the situation after a storm and help you clear up your property and return to normal safely. Chances are you won’t even lose as many trees as you feared. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Bluegrass Tree & Lawn of Columbus, Ohio for emergency service and safe tree removal.