For many Cariboo homeowners, a treed setting is one of the features they love most about their home or recreational property.
But sometimes those same trees that beautify the landscape also put homes and families at risk, whether from tree falls or fire.
That’s why an assessment with a certified professional and danger tree specialist is essential, says B&B Treetopping owner Kevin Birch. Recognizing signs of potential issues – like fire hazards or a conc indicating rot on an aspen – can save damage or injury that can occur when a problem goes undiagnosed.
“As a danger tree assessor with more than 15 years in the industry, I’m able to recognize potential issues or diseases that homeowners might not see,” Birch explains.
What should you consider when evaluating potential risks around your home?
Training to assess dangers: In addition to pruning and falling services for fire prevention and caring for all manner of ornamental and fruit trees, Birch is also certified in high risk and danger trees – those that due to their location or health pose a risk to people or property.
Fire-prevention to protect your home: With an early start to wildfire season, more homeowners are taking steps to reduce fire risks.
“Highly combustible coniferous trees – those with cones and needles – should not be within 10 metres of your home, Birch says, noting that half of wildfire-caused home fires start from sparks and embers.
Beyond the 10-metre mark, thinning coniferous trees to at least three metres apart will help reduce wildfire intensity, while pruning branches to two metres off the ground and removing smaller coniferous trees will help prevent the fire from climbing into the treetops where it can spread quickly.
Older deciduous trees with rot and damage are also susceptible and homeowners should enlist a professional to assess their condition.
And as weekend-home visitors return, walk around to see where winter damage or blow-down may present new risks. It’s also important to pick up leaves, branches and twigs that can fuel fire, says Birch, whose teams also offer clean-up with their pruning and falling services.
The right tools for the job: With varied trees and terrain throughout the 100 Mile House area, the right tools are essential. B&B recently added a new bucket truck to their well-equipped fleet that also includes chippers, chip-removal dump trucks and quads that can move into narrow, confined areas.
Safety, insurance and certification: Tree care poses risks and as such, it’s essential that companies are fully trained and insured. Not only does B&B Treetopping carry current insurance and WCB coverage, they also have a WorkSafe BC Faller Certificate and are Safe Certified with BC Forest Safety.