“Homeowners who are worried about trees falling and damaging property should call a professional arborist for an on-site inspection,” advised Tchukki Andersen, CTSP, BCMA*, staff arborist with the Tree Care Industry Association.
Andersen noted that trees are genetically designed to withstand most storms, but all trees can fail, and defective trees fail sooner than healthy trees. A sound tree becomes potentially dangerous when the tree’s woody structure is weakened by one or more defects. During storms, pre-existing defects predispose trees to failure.
“To a professional arborist,” noted Andersen, “defects are visible signs that a tree has the potential to fail.” Broadly defined, there are seven categories of defects: