Logging companies urge caution over risk of Friday’s thunderstorm

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) – With the recent drought leaving some trees in the area vulnerable to exposure and damage, some local forestry companies are concerned about wind potential with the chance of a Friday night thunderstorm.

Not only have the recent windy days downed some tree limbs and limbs in the area, but a thunderstorm with wind gusts over 39 mph can knock tree limbs and limbs down as well. Once the wind speed approaches 55 mph or more, some trees can easily be uprooted. Jordan Odem, the owner of The Tree Doctor and certified arborist, recently responded to several calls about fallen branches and tree limbs. He certainly notices the impact of the drought on the trees in the area while others remain resilient.

“A lot of our evergreen trees were hit harder than others,” Odem says. As for what it looks like now, a lot of softwood trees will be the first to be damaged. Many trees that have heavier foliage or heavier fruit or nuts still clinging to the branches, these are also the trees that will take a hit. The more heavily wooded trees, hardwoods versus softwoods, fare a little better in storms.

The Tree Doctor and other tree companies provide storm preparedness services to homeowners and commercial customers. Odem says preventive service can be quite comprehensive.

“We look at all their trees, their condition below ground to above ground,” says Odem. “We treat certain trees with amendments to help condition the soil and provide nutrition for what the tree is not getting. We sometimes thin the tree to allow sunlight and wind to move through the trees. We reinforce and wire the weaker branches that maybe cannot be removed for one reason or another. We provide that extra stability with a cable and brace situation.

For homeowners who don’t have time before a windy day or storms hit for preventative services, Odem encourages customers to inspect trees for themselves long before the storms arrive.

“Get out before the storm and look into the canopy of your trees,” he says. “If you see dead limbs that might fall off during a storm, it’s best to stay away from that part of the house. If you have trees that you know are damaged or haven’t been tended to for a while, it may be a good idea to move to another part of the house.

Plus, he says there are simple steps you can take to make sure your car or other property is as free from tree and wind damage as possible.

“If you’re looking in your trees and you know you have dead branches up there or something that can be dislodged during the storm, it might be wise to clear some space out of the garage and move your car inside or away from the tree.”

If homeowners experience tree damage, Odem encourages customers to do their research when looking for a reputable company to help with any cleanup.

“If you’re looking to bring someone onto the property, check their credentials to be a certified arborist,” says Odem. “You can check if they have adequate insurance. Having adequate insurance to be on your property is extremely important. You want to make sure that the certified arborist who goes out will be properly insured. That way, if something goes wrong, the worst case scenario is that they’re covered. You are covered. There would be no doubt if you hired the right person.

For additional tips on caring for trees after storm damage and other information on finding a reputable company for preventative maintenance or damage services, we have tips courtesy of the Department of Missouri Conservancy.

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