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You are Here: Home News Council reassures over safety following Cobden tree fall
18 December 2017
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Council reassures over safety following Cobden tree fall PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 22 September 2017 16:38

supervisorUpdate: Cobden Avenue reopened about 9pm
As work continued on Friday  to clear the tree that fell onto Cobden Avenue just before 8am, the council released a statement about tree safety.

• Tree misses traffic as it falls onto Cobden Avenue in rush hour

 

supervisor

The council said its in-house tree team was committed to staying on site until the road is clear and safe, but a spokesperson added: “It is a complex site and an extremely large tree to remove carefully and safely so it will take some time.”

The tree is described as a “very large Monterey Pine”, and it apparently missed hitting any vehicles on Cobden Avenue at what can be a very busy time on a weekday morning.

• Tree misses traffic as it falls onto Cobden Avenue in rush hour

Part of the tree did however fall into a property opposite Deepdene, and appeared to cause considerable damage to two vehicles parked outside. There also appears to be some damage to some roof tiles and guttering, and we understand CCTV equipment has also been damaged.

tree clearing platform

Mr Fazal Khan, who lives at the property, said he’d previously asked the council to look into the safety of the tree which fell, and other nearby trees, which he said would be likely to hit the house if they came down.

A council spokesperson however told bitternepark.info:

 

“Southampton’s Tree Operational Risk Management System (STORMS) policy is our proactive tree inspection policy: Prior to today's incident, we inspected the trees on Cobden Avenue last year and had programmed works which will require a road closure. The works due to be done are for routine dead-wooding and standard highway clearance, so, unfortunately, nothing that would have removed this tree or prevented the failure. We have had no recent reports of these trees appearing to pose a hazard. Our enquiry database only shows one enquiry reporting a hanging branch from 2015 - this was dealt with at the time.

tree clearing

“The trees on Cobden Avenue are inspected on a regular basis in line with industry guidelines. We manage a very large tree stock and resources are allocated on a priority basis. As we had already inspected and programmed works here we are keeping to our policy in terms of priority.

“It was impossible to predict this failure in this instance. It is very unfortunate that this failure has happened, but it was a healthy tree and has recently withstood high winds, so there is nothing that alerted us to it being more dangerous than others that do have visible defects. It was growing mainly on one side due to its position on the edge of a woodland: trees naturally grow towards the light and they usually ‘self-optimise’ – put on growth elsewhere to balance – almost certainly the roots in this case. The tree has been growing here for many decades with no problems of previous movement.

 "We will continue with the programme of works. The trees will continue to be checked regularly, and additionally if we receive reports of any concerns of a change.”

diversion

For more pictures, video and comment, see our previous story

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