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Dead and Dying trees in county to be removed

Stresses of going through a major hurricane do not fall on humans alone, trees in the county have also suffered as a result.

Hurricane Katrina has twisted many tress damaging their ability to stay alive and now those trees present a hazard to residents of the county if they fall into road ways. To alleviate this hazard the Federal Emergency Management Agency has agreed to fund the removal of those trees from county right of ways with the county only footing one percent of the bill, County Administrator Adrain Lumpkin said.

Lumpkin said that if the tree is leaning towards the road or provides some sort of danger to residents by falling in the road they are eligible for removal with funding.

This is not an extension of debris pickup, Lumpkin said.

Some taller trees that may be slightly further from the road side may be marked by crews touring the county, Lumpkin said. If a tree is marked in a resident’s land and they would like to opt out of the removal of the tree they can contact Dungan Engineering or the county supervisor’s office, Lumpkin said. Residents will be presented with a flyer stating the present situation and numbers to call if they would not like the tree removed, Lumpkin said.

However if residents opt out of the tree removal liability falls on the property owner if the tree does fall.

“That individual would be responsible for any damage it caused,” Lumpkin said.

Crews are currently touring the county looking for eligible removal trees, Lumpkin said. Funding is available from FEMA until Aug. 28 so work to remove the trees will begin soon, Lumpkin said.