Burned tree population explodes in Sonoma County

EMBED </>More Videos

If you drive through the Sonoma County Fire Zone, don't even try counting all the dead and felled trees. They number in the tens, if not hundreds of thousands.

If you drive through the Sonoma County Fire Zone, don't even try counting all the dead and felled trees. They number in the tens, if not hundreds of thousands.

RELATED: Mack the cat reunited with Santa Rosa family after custody battle

Some remain upright.

Others lie as if tossed in mass graves.

If on private property, owners beware. "Any individual with burned trees on his lot is responsible for moving them," said Santa Rosa Assistant Fire Marshall Paul Lowenthal.

In most cases, insurance will cover it. Lowenthal finds himself in the unique position of not only talking about policy but also dealing with it as a person who lost his home in Larkfield Estates.

"I mean for a whole neighborhood, it is devastating," said Jeff Kowell of Image Tree Service. "95 percent of the trees, here, need to be removed."

Kowell's company is already in contract with many of the Larkfield Estates homeowners. "If everybody signs at once, we do them at once and more from one lot to another. That is where the savings are at," he said.

RELATED: Answers lead to questions for Santa Rosa mobile home residents

"Whether I need to rebuild or not, it needs to be cleared before I move forward," said homeowner Gregg Barrett.

However, there is more to tree removal than saws and trucks, especially in the fire zone.

And, possibly, relief if you know where to find it.

The City of Santa Rosa will offer free chipping of trees, brush, and waste in Fountaingrove on February 24th, and in Coffee Park, February 25th. "They just need to get it here," said Lowenthal.

Or, of you owned any of the 11,000 trees that PG&E cut down in Sonoma County, that agency will help, as well. PG&E has sent letters to some 88-hundred homeowners asking if they want to opt-in to a Wildfire Wood Management Program.

Trees need to be at least four inches in diameter and clearly marked as having been felled by PG&E. Look for bright green paint, ribbons, or tags. The deadline for applying is Feb. 28.

Click here for more stories, photos, and video on the North Bay Fires.
Related Topics:
naturetree fallNorth Bay FiresfirefighterswildfirefirePG&Esonoma countySonoma
(Copyright ©2018 KGO-TV. All Rights Reserved.)