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Tree Surveys and Reports

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What is a Tree Survey and Why Do I Need One?

A tree survey is a type of report that’s carried out on private or public land. The aim of the survey is to provide useful information on the trees, so that informed decisions can be made.

There is lots of different information that goes into a tree survey. As professional arborists, we work to British Standard BS 5837. This is a useful guide that helps determine which trees should be retained, and which should be removed.

A tree survey documents information such as tree species; physical measurements; tree age; overall health of the tree; life expectancy and any management recommendations.

Why are tree surveys needed?

Most people conduct tree surveys because they have the intention to clear or build on the land, perhaps somewhere near the locations of the trees. In such circumstances, a tree survey becomes extremely important.

In some areas of the UK, the law dictates that a tree survey should be carried out, perhaps because there is a certain species of tree that must be protected. The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 is in place to prevent protected trees from being cut down either intentionally or by accident.

Tree surveys are also used to help develop building or landscaping plans. Say for example you want to build on the land near a tree. The information from the tree survey will inform the designs, which will be all the more accurate.

Landscapers can use the information to decide which trees to keep and plan around, and which can be removed.

Tree Surveys

Some people have tree surveys carried out when they’re buying a property so that they can find out about any hazards in advance. For example, a tree survey might reveal trees that are prone to falling, or that are diseased and could be hazardous during high winds or storms. If this is the case, tree removal may be necessary.

If you are planning building works, such as an extension or out house, then a tree survey will be necessary. You’ll also need one of you are moving or changing access or service lines. The survey will need to include trees on the site, as well as trees within twelve metres of any new service line, access point or new building.

For new builds, you’ll need to survey all he trees on the site, as well as any within twelve metres of the site’s boundary.

Once they’ve been surveyed, each tree will be allocated a unique number and tag, allowing the trees to be cross checked against the information collected.

Tree surveys are not required if you’re altering an existing property but not changing its footprint, access points or service lines.

What are the different types of tree survey?

A Tree Condition Survey or Tree Risk Assessment involves examining the tree closely for defects and disease.

The survey will provide recommendations to help reduce risks. In some areas, for example near to schools or the public highway, a Tree Condition Survey needs to be carried out on a regular basis, usually annually, but preferably at different times of the year, because trees change through the seasons and different issues can become apparent at different times of the year.

Monitoring the condition of a tree will help you proactively take appropriate action to reduce risks.

A pre-purchase Tree Report and Survey may be required when buying or selling a property to assess the risk of subsidence and tree failure. The report will include trees that are close enough to the property to influence it, and will provide recommendations for reducing risk.

If there is evidence of subsidence, a Tree Report and Survey will show which trees have caused the issue.

A Legal and Expert Witness Tree Report is carried out when a tree is thought to have injured someone or caused property damage. The report is used as evidence in litigation proceedings.

Tree surveys

Tree surveys from TH Trees Ltd

At TH Trees Ltd, we regularly carry out tree surveys and reports across Essex.

To produce the report, we carry out a visual inspection of the tree’s exterior, and use a PiCUS Sonic Tomograph to analyse the inside of the tree. The tomograph uses sound waves to detect signs of decay deep inside the trunk of the tree that you would not be able to see with the naked eye.

Once we have carried out the inspection, we’ll provide an official Tree Report for you to pass on to the local authority, your solicitor, insurance provider or whoever has asked for it.

For tree reports Essex wide call TH Trees Ltd on 01268 642 814. Competitive rates guaranteed.

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