Arborists race to mitigate damage before next storm

December 4, 2012 12:00:00 AM PST
With the recent rains, many trees are waterlogged all over the Bay Area. It is so serious that a clean-up crew, dispatched to help New York after Superstorm Sandy, rushed back to the Bay Area to help out.

It began raining in the North Bay Tuesday night around 9 p.m. and that is complicating things for tree crews trying to protect homeowners and the public.

Tree crews in Larkspur are cutting as many limbs and branches as they can before another storm roll in late Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. It has been an impossible game of catch up, trying to protect the public from falling trees or heavy branches that could seriously injure or kill someone walking underneath.

Zac Olson of the Marin Tree Service and his crew have been running non-stop since the big weekend storms. They shot video of a massive oak tree which fell on Friday, right on top of Doris Hong's home in Ross, splitting her roof in two.

Hong said that sound was, "Oh, it was so horrible, it was so loud."

Luckily, she wasn't hurt but her home of 60 years suffered major damage.

"Trees that are leaning, people are concerned, they're paying attention, so I'm getting calls and going out and looking at things and hopefully mitigating potential hazards," said arborist Drew Landers from Agrifolia Tree Service.

Landers has spent the last two days removing a 100 foot Douglas fir which fell in Sandy Howard's yard in Fairfax, crushing her garage and the family car.

"The fir tree [started leaning and swaying] and it didn't come back, I yelled, 'The fir is falling, the fir is falling!' and we ran out," said Howard.

"I've had very little sleep in the last three or four days," said arborist Aaron Corbiere from Tree Man Arborist Service.

Corbiere came back to California from Long Island, New York where he's been helping homeowners recover from Superstorm Sandy.

"I started looking at the weather and started hearing reports of something big coming in. So I got on a plane, came in the evening before the first storm and ever since then it's just been non-stop," said Corbiere.

Corbiere says he will return to storm ravaged Long Island on Thursday, but says he'll return to Northern California when the next big storm hits.


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