Experts worry trees may topple under high winds - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Experts worry trees may topple under high winds

A 70-year-old oak tree made a loud bang when it smashed into Ed Duffy's shed. A 70-year-old oak tree made a loud bang when it smashed into Ed Duffy's shed.
ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

South Georgia has gotten a lot of rain over the last month or so.

Regular rain hasn't allowed the ground to dry up, especially along creeks and rivers and in areas with sandy soil.

With high winds expected this weekend, tree surgeons worry many water logged hardwood trees with shallow root systems could topple.

A 70-year-old oak tree made a loud bang when it smashed into Ed Duffy's shed.

He says the tree survived Albany's 1994 and 1998 floods.

But the oak couldn't withstand the recent weather events, minor by comparison to those historic floods.

"Pine trees have a tap root that goes straight down so they hold a little bit better," said Lee Harper with Harper Tree Service. "Your hardwood trees have shallow root systems like the one behind me and that's the reason it fell on over."

Harper says clustered trees, or top heavy hardwoods are most at risk for falling.

"When you have a group of trees, the limbs always grow away from the inside so that's going to be your leaning trees, the ones that will topple," he said.

So with shallow roots that have been sitting in saturated ground for many weeks, Harper expects more to fall.

This experienced tree tech has a warning for South Georgians going into the weekend:

"You have winds coming out of the northwest, so if you have any trees you are worried about on the north/northwest side of your house, I would sleep on the other side of the house, that way they don't blow down on you," Harper said.

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