Tree experts say most Tuesday's storm damage preventable - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Tree experts say most Tuesday's storm damage preventable

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As clean up continues from this week's powerful thunderstorms, a lot of south Georgians are learning a costly lesson.

Most of the damage Tuesday was caused by falling trees and limbs that slammed into homes and crushed cars.

South Georgia tree experts say most of that damage could have been avoided with some preventive maintenance.

After a second busy day of removing trees from on top of dozens of South Georgia homes and cars, one Albany expert says more than 80 percent of the storm damaged trees were diseased or dead. Maintenance of your trees could have saved much of that damage.

For the second day chain saws roared across South Georgia.  Cleaning up fallen trees like this pin oak. Lee Harper says it will cost a lot of money to fix the damage he has cleared.

Lee Harper of Harper Tree Service said "Around 150 to 180 thousand dollars worth of work. Just on the roof work that roofers are getting."

And Harper says proper tree maintenance could have saved most of that damage.

Harper said "Most all of these them were either dead or diseased. Like this one right here. A limb broken out of it about 3 years ago. The rain and bugs get into that and rot the inside of the tree out."

You didn't know that rain can fill trees with water.  Take a look at this video, and all the water rushing out after cutting one of the storm damaged trees.

 Harper said "They are bad and that's what makes it weak. And the least little bit of wind or rain, anything like that can make them come on over."

Damaged roofs and smashed cars cost a lot more than prevention. Harper says just go out in your yard and look at your trees.

 Harper said "any twists or funny spots coming up, that makes the trees weak. That creates disease."

Oak trees rot from top down, from the inside, and you might not see they are rotten on the inside. So look for knots or holes from broken or cut limbs. That prevention might save you lots of damage or even lives during the next storm.

Harper pointed out lots of diseased trees still standing after the storm, and he said sooner or later they could be a real danger if not dealt with.

If you have questions, most tree services give free advice and estimates when they're not so busy cleaning storm damage.

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