Monday, July 18, 2011

ISA HK --- Tree news (2010 Shatin Tree Failure

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Dear Station Members,

Below are two sets of news on the 2010 Shatin Tree Failure, which very sadly had costed the life of an innocent cyclist when his head was hit by a fallen branch. The Coroner Court has since then given a verdict of an "Accidental Death".

The recommendations thereafter proposed by the juries also did not incur anything new. The focus appeared to be on improvement of the Tree Risk Assessment (TRA), better training for the frontline staff, & even requesting the cyclists to wear safety helmet during cycling.

There have been other reports on the media that the frontline staff had been given a deadline for TRA for thousands of trees, but no queries have been raised to challenge the feasibility or the practicality of the requirement. This might have induced pressure among frontline staff who might be over-worked for the many daily chores which have to be completed on top of the latest TRA assignment. The communication between the administration & those who are doing the work upfront would be vital for a win-win situation. Misunderstanding on either side may cost life. This appears to be a test for the political skills of the administrators.

In raising the TRA standard, ISA HK/China does not regard attending crash courses would do the job. We have repeatedly stressed that any detailed TRA requires a profound knowledge of Tree Biology &, Tree Biomechanics. Both can not be achieved by attending fast-food programs. Either will take years of hard studies to learn & practice out. ISA HK/China would recommend that any organization dealing with TRA should have at least one senior Arborist there attaining the knowledge level of the ISA Board Certified Master Arborist ( , or even better as Registered Consulting Arborist ( to overlook any TRA produced by the junior staff. The Certified Arborist credential should be common among the frontline staff. Only by elevating the general performance standard, that the quality of TRA can be improved in our territory.

HK is diving into the most sophisticated part of Arboriculture of TRA apparently out of political pressure. Three lives have been lost by Tree Failure since 2006 in Ngau Tau Kok, Stanley & Shatin. With the population density of HK ranking one of the highest in the world, TRA has become a necessary part of social investment. It has been forced to happen in a hurry to try to save lives. Yet the 30+ years of Tree Planting & Conservation in HK which would have contributed in part to the many Tree Failures, has hardly raised the alarm to the public.

Tree Planting today is still not fully in the hand of the Arborists. Arborists are rarely asked to help in the Selection & Installation of trees. It is true that Mother Nature makes the Rules for any Tree Planting. We wish HK good luck in her work.

best regards,

Sammy Au

President (Station Manager)
Registered Consulting Arborist no. RCA#497 (
ISA Board Certified Master Arborist / Certified Tree Worker no. HK-0174BT (
Independent Practicing Arborist no. IPA-010908 (

"Providing treatment without in-depth diagnosis & research support is professional misconduct. "

"Casual tree assessor delivers wanton tree assessment. Mother Nature makes the rules."




曾有其他报告对媒体表示前线工作人员被设定了限期为成千上万的树木作风险评估,但并没有人为这限期的可行性及现实情况作出任何疑问。 这可能为前线员工带来过量的工作, 或由于有许多要优先处理的日常琐事, 而把树木风险评估工作放在工作顺序中比较次要的位置。故此,行政人员及前线工作人员的沟通是至关重要的。 对树木管理以及风险评估的误解, 将以生命作为代价。 这将在未来测试出行政人员的政治技巧。

本会并不认为密集的课程可提升树木风险评估的标准。我们多次强调, 做详细的树木风险评估前, 需要先掌握渊博的树木生物学及树木生物力学的知识。 这些知识并不能从出席“快餐”般的课程中取到, 只有经过多年的艰苦研究及学习才能真正掌握。本会建议, 任何处理树木风险评估的组织应該至少由一名高级树艺师主管, 及指导初级人员, 而这高级树艺师需要拥有ISA “资深树艺师”(www.isa- , 甚至更高级的 “顾问树艺师”(WWW.ASCA-的知识水平才可。 前线员工則应普遍拥有 “注冊树艺师” 的资格。只有通过提高一般树木风险评估的标准,本地树木风险评估工作的水平才能得到提升。

出于政治上的压力,香港的树木风险评估工作在最近受到很多的注目。自2006年以来, 树木倒塌事故已经在牛头角、赤柱及沙田夺去三个生命。 香港是世界上人口密度最高的地区之一,树木风险评估已成为必要的社会支出。它是被迫出现去减少人命伤亡。然而,香港過去30年的树木种植及保护工作, 也间接影響著许多树木的倒塌事故。

树木种植在今天仍然没有完全由树艺师所主导。在选种及树木种植上, 树艺师仍然很少被要求帮助。 大自然的规则会决定树木种植的成败。也许我们可以保存这个讯息及在几年之后再作评定...


国际树木学会 中国地区分会 会长

顾问树艺师号 RCA#497 (
资深树艺师 / 注册攀树师号 HK-0174BT (
独立执业树艺师号 IPA-010908 (



(以上由莊俊榮 注册树艺师 /市政树艺师号 HK-0009AM 翻绎。一切内容以英文版本为准。)

康文署管樹一團糟 陪審團提多項建議


在政策方面,陪審團建議樹木辦重新劃分樹木風險級別,並定出極高風險樹木類別並制訂相關的巡查及管理方法,如加強在風雨季時巡查密度。另外,他們 認為要全面檢討現行樹木風險評估的方法,制訂清晰完善的指引,以確保前線員工能有系統執行。






塌樹殺人 裁定意外 死者妻擬向康文署索償





 另外,署方需要要加強前線員工培訓,員工必須修讀樹木風險評估的課程,通過考核方可執行職務。最後,希望政府加強市民對樹木安全知識,教育市 民了解樹木風險,同時應鼓勵市民戴頭盔踩單車,提高安全意識。



康文署昨日回應死因庭,在09年已進行全面檢討,署方已提升樹木管理工作的水平,包括重組樹木管理架構,專責樹木管理員由124人增至221 人,又改善樹木檢查指示,並加強社區宣傳及教育,透過舉辦講座和活動,鼓勵市民協助舉報有問題的樹木。