Tall trees worry house owner

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By DANIEL WHIT­FIELD

Brian Avi­son was not amused when he was told trees be­hind his Whitby prop­erty would not be chopped down, de­spite his nu­mer­ous com­plaints.

For two years, Avi­son has been ask­ing Porirua City Coun­cil to re­move sev­eral pine trees be­hind his house in Tran­som Close he be­lieves may top­ple over in strong winds.

He said they were big trees and the threat of them fall­ing was real.

‘‘ If one of them came down, it would fall on my house and garage. It is just an­other thing to worry about,’’ Avi­son said.

He said it felt as if the coun­cil could not be both­ered do­ing any­thing.

‘‘The thing that brasses me off is that there are so many other cases of trees be­ing cut down af­ter peo­ple have com­plained. So what about th­ese ones?’’

Trees in Can­nons Creek were re­moved this year af­ter res­i­dent Mau­reen Col­lis com­plained to the coun­cil.

Avi­son has been in his home for more than 30 years and said some- thing should be done, be­cause he is a ratepayer.

‘‘I can’t chop them down be­cause if they fell on to some­one else’s prop­erty, I’d be li­able.’’

He said a coun­cil ar­borist had in­spected the trees and told him they would not fall down in 100 years.

‘‘The trees sway and we’ve found branches on the ground that have bro­ken off in the wind,’’ Avi­son said.

He has been in touch with his in­sur­ance com­pany and said he would be cov­ered if a tree fell on to his house, but would have to pay an ex­cess of about $5000.

Coun­cil’s parks manager Olivia Dovey said the coun­cil’s ar­borist has as­sessed the trees twice in re­sponse to calls from Mr Avi­son.

‘‘Af­ter the ini­tial com­plaint we checked the trees and found that they were safe and not en­croach­ing on Mr Avi­son’s prop­erty. Af­ter the sec­ond com­plaint ear­lier this year we went out again and came to the same con­clu­sion that the trees are safe.’’

Dovey said the coun­cil re­moved trees in Can­nons Creek as part of a planned pro­gramme of work to re­place that wood­land.

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