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Dear Station Members,
As the rainy season approaches southern China, Urban Trees begin to fail as a traditional routine in our territory.
Attached is an insignificant piece of Trees News in a local newspaper showing a 10m tall tree of unknown species, failed at 8 am of 6.3.09 after heavy rain, to hit the buildings next to it. Balustrades of the 2 buildings were damaged & luckily no one was hurt. From the picture so shown, the fallen tree rested upon the balcony of a building & the chance of hitting a casual visitor would be high if at the wrong time of the day, say, evening after a meal.
It appears that our public may not have accepted the concept of 'Prevention is Better than Cure' when it comes to Tree Care, especially for potentially hazardous trees of mature size. Certain ailing trees have been kept in place out of compassion, but without regular inspection by a trained Arborist. A lot of people appear to love trees in so far that they do not have to spend money on it. Regular Tree Inspection at a 6 month interval is considered unnecessary, & trees health & safety are judged by looking at the foliage alone.
Then when the tree failed, as long as the incident does not kill, the media coverage is usually insignificant & the fallen tree would be quickly removed out of convenience. An Independent Arborist would hardly be called in to carry out post mortem for future prevention or recommendation. The case would be regarded by the public as an Act of God which should happen from time to time, because trees are doomed to fail one time or another. Any legal liabilities would be the problem of the insurance company. The case would look after itself well in our social structure with maybe a few whisper among the Tree Lovers to be just another unfortunate incident. Memories would fade in time until a bigger case would come up again.
With attitude as such in our society, trees are likely to carry on failing because they are expected to fail. Information on Tree Failure will continue to feed into ISA HK/China & Tree Failure Report will become a never ending story in our Station Mail to when ?....
"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."