Tree Stand Safety! Inspect the tree before you set up your stand.

•November 17, 2012 • Leave a Comment

November 2011

Tree Stand Safety

 

It is fall and you are gunning for a twelve point buck! You have scouted the woods and found a deer trail that looks like a highway. You are excited and prepare to put your stand in a tree in close proximity to the trail. But wait, did you think about that tree? Is it strong enough to hold you and your stand?  What should you look for?

Before installing your stand give the tree a good inspection. Use what arborists call Visual Tree Assessment (VTA) to make sure the tree will support  you and your stand. In your excitement don’t take chances which might lead to you getting hurt and your deer getting away!

When inspecting the tree look:

  • At the ground around the tree. Are there exposed roots? Does the tree lean with roots exposed on the side away from the lean? Are animals burrowing under roots?
  • At the root flare (area where the tree comes out of the ground). Is it decayed? Are there hollows or mushrooms? Have animals caused damage to the flare or lower trunk?
  • Over the trunk of the tree. Is bark missing? Are there fungal growths exuding from the side? Are there cracks that go deep into the wood or horizontally across the grain?
  • At the limb junction. Is it split or does it have fungus growing from it. Is there bark missing? Does it look swollen with a crease going parallel down from the junction? Does it look like it could split apart?
  • Finally at the upper limbs of the tree. Are there big dead limbs (look for missing bark on the limbs and/or missing smaller twigs and buds)? Are there loose limbs in the tree that could fall and hit you? Also make sure there are no utility lines running through the tree.

If your tree exhibits any of these symptoms you should pick another tree. I know you are excited and want to bag that big buck. But remember ‘There’s Always Time for Safety!™”

For more info check out my White Paper on Premise Liability and Your Trees!

Jud

“Consulting Arborist Corner” is brought to you by Jud Scott who is an avid hunter and a Registered Consulting Arborist. As a Consulting Arborist, Jud is available to assist you with your consulting needs and tree conflicts as they arise. Jud can be reached at 317-815-TREE (8733) or at Treeconsultant@aol.com.

Final note: This article does not explain all aspects of Visual Tree Assessment (VTA). More research may be needed.

September Consulting Arborist Quiz

•September 17, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Click here to take the September Quiz

If you like these quizzes  please take a minute and zip me an email to give me a little feed back on how to make them better, how you use them or just to say “Hey”!

Here is your September Consulting Arborist Quiz! My hope is that it will help you and your staff learn about conflicts involving trees.

If you fill out the Quiz and send it back I will enter you in a drawing for a coffee card and send you back an answer sheet with some explanation.

A couple questions before you start.

1- Do you have any friends that would like to be added to this mailing?

2- Would you like to start an inner office competition. I can grade separately and announce the office winner!

Thanks,

Jud

Tree Expert for Cases and Claims Involving Trees and Landscapes

•December 4, 2011 • Leave a Comment

When your case involves trees or landscapes.

Jud Scott Consulting Arborist LLC. is available on a national level to
assist you in finding a resolution to your tree conflict.  Whether it is testifying support for your insurance claim or forensic support for your legal case, Jud is a Tree Expert who brings 35+ years of field experience to the table.

Services available are:
Arboricultural/Horticultural consulting including:

  • Hazard Tree Analysis
  • Premise Liability Consultation
  • Herbicide Interaction Investigation
  • Premise Liability Audits™
  • Tree Inspection Plans and Programs
  • Safety Program Analysis
  • Tree Preservation Planning
  • Proper Pruning Consultation
  • Historic Tree Care Planning
  • Zoning Board Consultation, concerning trees
  • Tree Inventories and Analysis
  • Tree and Shrub Appraisal
  • Tree Worker Safety Training
  • Utility, Tree and People Conflicts
  • Arboricultural Dispute Resolution
  • Accident Reconstruction with Models
  • Evidence Collection and Storage
  • Expert Witness Services
  • Forensic Expert Services


Jud strives to work for you as a “Consultants to the Professional!™
Let me know if you would like a copy of my Curriculum Vitae and see my website www.judscottconsultingarborist.com

Consulting Arborist Corner- Boundary Trees

•June 19, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Whose Tree is it Anyway?

Your client wants a new fence, but as your crew begins building it, there is a root in the way. They grab the chainsaw and lop off a portion of the root, so the fence rail will run straight.

All of a sudden the neighbor comes running out, waving a broom, and screaming, “Get away from my tree! I just called the police! You guys are trespassing!”

Does this scenario sound familiar? You had measured the tree and it is straddling the property line between your client’s property and the neighbor’s property; so what is the big deal?

You need to know that Indiana courts have determined:

[I]f the trunk of a tree is wholly or in part upon the line dividing the land of an adjoining owner, it is the common property of both; and it has been held that the property interest of each owner is identical as to the extent the portion of the tree is upon his land, and that where a tree is thus owned in common, neither party has the right to cut or injure the same without the consent of the other, and if he does, he will be liable for damages therefor. Luke et al. v. Scott, 187 N.E. 63, 64 (Ind. Ct. App. 1933).

So what does this mean? While the exact definition of “trunk of a tree” can probably be debated in the field, if any part of a tree spans the boundary line between your client’s land and the neighbor’s property, you need to ask before you cut. This tree could be common property of the adjoining landowners – which means that even if you and/or your client think the tree is a nuisance, or if it’s in the way of a job, you can’t cut or injure the tree without the neighbor’s blessing.

Save costly delays: As you plan that new landscape feature, be mindful of trees that are possibly “common property.”

“Consulting Arborist Corner” is brought to you by Jud Scott a Registered Consulting Arborist. As a Consulting Arborist, Jud is available to assist you with tree care and tree conflicts that may arise.

The fence installer notched the root flare to install the fence.

Legal commentary by Katherine Welch Rarick, of Bose McKinney & Evans, who may be reached at Krarick@boselaw.com.

Trees in History- Willow from Napolean’s Tomb

•June 2, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Historic Willow Tree

Leroy Fitch, half-brother of Dr. G. N. Fitch, was in the United States navy for many years. In 1840 he was an officer aboard the United States war ship that was appointed to escort the remains of Napoleon Bonaparte from the Island of St. Helena back to Paris for permanent sepulcher. When at St. Helena he secured a sprout of a willow tree that stood at the head of Napoleon’s grave on that island and brought it home with him and planted it on the Fitch lot, corner of Seventh and Market streets (Logansport Indiana), where it grew into a large tree and may now be seen in front of George W. Seybold’s residence, No. 709 Market street, who purchased the property. The tree is now nearly two feet in diameter and stands in front of the house on the lot line and in building the present iron fence they were considerate enough to make a curve in the fence around this historic tree in order to preserve it.

Note from Jud: This tree no longer exists as it was toppled in a storm, years ago but the Indiana connection to Napoleon and trees is of note!

Reference: History of Cass County Indiana, Jehu Z Powell, Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago IL, 1913


May Consulting Arborist Quiz

•May 20, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Take the May Quiz Here!

If you like these quizzes  please take a minute and zip me an email to give me a little feed back on how to make them better, how you use them or just to say “Hey”!

Here is your May Consulting Arborist Quiz! My hope is that it will help you and your staff learn about conflicts involving trees.

If you fill out the Quiz and send it back I will enter you in a drawing for a coffee card and send you back an answer sheet with some explanation.

A couple questions before you start.

1- Do you have any friends that would like to be added to this mailing?

2- Would you like to start an inner office competition. I can grade separately and announce the office winner!

Thanks,

Jud

Consulting Arborist Corner- Clear around that fireplug!

•April 22, 2011 • Leave a Comment

A Plug for the Fire Department!

In your duties as a landscape maintenance contractor, pay specific attention to the fire hydrant in your client’s front lawn. When you plow snow in the winter do not push the snow so as to hide or limit access to the hydrant. Also when trimming shrubs in the summer, your clients may request that you do not trim much, because “they don’t want to see the fire hydrant in their front lawn”. Advise them that to clear the fire hydrant is a good practice and may be the law. According to the Indiana Fire Code, a fire hydrant is supposed to have “a 3-foot clear space (that) shall be maintained around the circumference of the fire hydrant, except as otherwise required or approved”.

A Landscape Architect or Designer needs to be very careful in designing plantings or fencing around a fire hydrant. First, never plant shrubs or specify a fence with the intent to totally screen the fire hydrant, as they are to be visible for fire safety. Also be careful in what you specify to plant near fire hydrants because if your proposed planting grows to hide the hydrant and prevents the fire department from finding it during a fire emergency, you may be liable!

Attorney W. Scott  Montross, Indianapolis, who represents plaintiffs exclusively in civil litigation, “advises that preventing a Fire Department from accessing or locating a fire hydrant due to landscaping or fencing, could result in civil liability if it can be proven that such action caused or contributed to cause fire damage beyond what would have occurred had the hydrant been accessible.”

As you work to maintain your client’s property remember that a fire hydrant is a public safety structure that needs to be attended to. It is there for your client’s safety as well as others in the neighborhood.

Consulting Arborist Corner is brought to you by Jud Scott,  a Registered Consulting Arborist.  As a Consulting Arborist, Jud is available to assist you with tree care and tree conflicts that may arise.

Note: Jud Scott does not intend to provide legal advice and would like to thank W. Scott  Montross for assistance. For further counsel or expert legal advice, call Scott at Montross Miller Muller Mendelson & Kennedy (317) 574-4500.

Vegetation should be cleared around fireplugs!

 
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