‘Timebomb’ after tree topples on main route

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Sopping wet soils after record-breaking floods have left trees on a steep bank above one of Waiheke’s main roads a ‘timebomb’,  according to a local arborist.

This comes after a substantial wattle tree toppled onto Ocean View Road, blocking traffic on Friday afternoon.

A quick-thinking arborist was among a group of good Samaritans who used chainsaws to clear the fallen tree at about 4.30pm before calling the emergency services and Auckland Council to make the road safe.

That same arborist had already logged a report to the council, concerned that a nearby tree seemed in danger of collapsing down the bank.

He has since been in touch with Waiheke Local Board chair Cath Handley to ask for action on the precariously perched trees. 

“It was lucky there were a couple of guys who turned up and knew what to do and got it tidied up safely; the whole thing could have come down. It was very softly, softly, choosing which of the branches to cut off,” said Rob Marshall, who runs Tree Services on Waiheke.

“We started chopping it up [the wattle tree] and put it to the side of the road. The trunk and root ball we left lying at the side of the road facing the bank, we weren’t going to tackle that.”

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