What to do if your trees fall on your property
What to do if your trees fall on your property is a question asked by many people across the United States. The National Arbor Day Foundation (NARF) states that in the United States, at least seven billion trees are destroyed or injured each year. Trees Atlanta also states that the Metro Atlanta area has the highest “urban tree canopy”, which is the second layer of foliage, bark and stems of trees that completely cover the ground if viewed from above. During these heavy downpours over the past several months, falling trees have become fixtures on the landscape of Metro Atlanta.
Many residents of the region have been discussing the possibility of having trees planted on their property, along with warning signs to keep cars off the roads during storms. Residents and business owners have been inundated with phone calls and e-mails from close friends and neighbors, asking what they need to do. Some have even gotten into the idea of hiring tree specialists to help. But many local residents are still concerned about the safety of their homes and are asking what to do if their trees fall on someone’s car or other property. Here is some information to answer that question:
What to do if your trees fall on your property is not dependent upon who was at fault. If the tree fell on your property from another source, such as a falling roof shingle, and another thing caused the damage, such as the wind, then there is nothing that you can do to save your belongings. Wind-borne debris, such as tree limbs and uprooted trunks are dangerous enough on their own, but when combined with rainwater, they become a potentially deadly combination. In addition, a tree which breaks into smaller pieces, often because of insects or other conditions, can often re-entry the home if it is struck by the ground.
However, when trees are fallen from the sky, it is usually the property owner or the neighbor who is responsible for getting the branches removed, removing the damage, and replacing any of the fallen debris. This often means contacting a contractor to pick up the pieces, empty your shed, or clean up the mess. You may have to pay the cost of the debris removal and replacement, depending on how much work is involved. If the tree-destroying event was the neighbor’s fault, he or she will likely be liable for the costs of the removal and repair, as well as any legal fees. Your insurance company may also cover some or all of these costs.
What to do if your trees fall on your property is also dependent upon the speed with which they fell. If the falling branch or other debris was dropping at a relatively slow pace, there is little that you can do to save your home. The best thing you can do is assess the situation and determine if you should call a tree removal service or if you should try to deal with the problem yourself. If the tree falls fast and seriously damages your roof or a portion of your walls, you may need to tear down part or all of the damaged portions immediately. If the tree falls slowly, you may be able to assess the extent of the damage and repair yourself, or you might need to contact a tree removal company.
What to do if your trees fall on your property is not solely a question of liability. Trees that fall can cause injury or death if they hit someone or hit a road hazard. Falling branches can also injure children or pets and pose health risks to you and your family if they break or get stuck in the tree. It can also ruin grass and damage the appearance of your yard if the fallen tree falls on your grass when you are trying to now.