UKTC Archive

RE: Disgruntled client

Subject: RE: Disgruntled client
From: Rupert Baker
Date: Sep 30 2020 22:05:33
People used to take the p**s out of Donald Rumsfeld and his known knowns, 
unknown unknowns etc etc - but he was spot-on in terms of what we should try 
and consider when taking a decision

Rupert

-----Original Message-----
From: uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info On Behalf Of Wayne Tyson
Sent: 30 September 2020 19:25
To: UK Tree Care <uktc@xxxxxx.tree-care.info>
Subject: Re: Disgruntled client

Thanks for your response.

Uncounted means uncounted.

With respect, I'm not into "risk" assessment. When a tree falls that was 
deemed "perfectly healthy," by some "authority," that attracts my attention. 
I'd like to know the details. I have never contested the fact that 
"statistics" comparing one's chances of being killed or injured by a tree to 
being killed or injured by lightning, for example, because I have no way of 
knowing the foundations for the claim. In the context of, say, street trees 
or those in parks and other urban spaces (that is to say, genuine 
comparables), does the picture change? Probably not much, but not, I assert, 
insignificant. To use honest statistics, the true comparables might, for 
example, be all trees that fail with the cases that cause injuries and deaths 
(an even lower likelihood would be multiple injuries and deaths). Just as in 
the case of, say, aircraft accidents, the "probable cause" is always composed 
of a complete examination of all evidence. How would one's "chances" of being 
killed in an "aircraft accident" be calculated? Compared to what? All deaths? 
Would that be honest statistics?

The main question of my *ongoing,* *unpublished* study is to look at cases 
where tree failures occurred, and whether or not there were any factors 
present prior to the failure that could have contributed to it. I have not 
encountered any failures in which a single factor was responsible. I do 
recall one that was close: I investigated (without authority) one that fell 
onto a small playground and a father and his young daughter. It was a tall, 
straight, "perfectly healthy" pine. *All* of the lateral roots had been 
"pruned" off, apparently because they were on the surface and interfering 
with mowing, but who knows why--because they were ugly? Apparently,
*because* the tree (Canary Island Pine) was healthy enough to be growing 
taller (longer moment-arm) and there was one remaining "tap" root, smaller 
than the trunk and the tree was straight and plumb, the laws of physics, as 
they always do when gravity is involved, determined the outcome. There was no 
wind; good conditions for playground use. If I had looked at the tree prior 
to the failure, I doubt that I would have noticed that this tree alone, among 
others with surface roots, was anything but "perfectly healthy." I had seen 
one other case of the same species in Balboa Park (San Diego CA USA) where 
lateral roots appeared to never have formed near the surface. Doing a little 
digging, I found that the one of the "laterals"
wasn't lateral, but wound around the "tap" root and constricted it. It broke 
off at that precise point. By far, however, nearly all of the "perfectly 
healthy" cases I've looked at, both on-site and via GSV and media, have 
displayed multiple factors that should lead any reasonable person, and 
certainly any professional, to investigate further and take
*appropriate* action.

Even though I don't consider relative risk meaningful (I don't know what the 
ratio is based on), I don't object (except, perhaps, in specific cases) to 
others embracing the idea. I'm interested in details, not generalities.
If a more qualified statistician than I would like to be a co-author, I'd be 
grateful to have assistance in doing honest statistics, I will be happy to 
share the large number of cases I have assembled. Fair warning, however--the 
variables are numerous. I would like to have a physicist as well.

I am puzzled by the apparently emotional discussions I have read here in the 
past. It is not my intent to gore anyone's personal ox with my statements, 
and I'm never offended by the critical comments of others, especially if they 
actually move the ball. I eschew personal personal "attacks," and expect the 
same from others. I appreciate very much that the post that generated this 
reply actually quoted the "offending" statements that I made.

I do agree that it's good to know something, and am always grateful for 
specific corrections and discussions about issues (but not about persons or 
personalities). As Josh Billings once put it, "The worst kinda ignerance 
ain't so much not knowin', as 'tis knowin' so much that ain't so."

Y'all stay safe, well, and happy!

Wayne




On Wed, Sep 30, 2020 at 1:00 AM Jerry Ross <trees@xxxxxxxxxx.co.uk> wrote:

1) The tree that fell over did not cause harm - no red meat for 
ambulance-chasing lawyers to get their teeth into
2) The tree that did cause injury seemingly didn't show pre-existing 
signs of weakness (at least it 'looked in much the same condition as 
the others').
Should it and all those other seemingly symptom-free trees have been 
felled?

You "have come across uncounted cases where the locals were concerned 
about a tree, but were told by dismissive, condescending, 
finger-wagging officials that the locals must have ulterior motives 
for wanting the tree removed because an"inspection" found that the 
tree was "perfectly healthy."

At risk of appearing to be dismissive or condescending (but not, I 
hope,
finger-wagging) can I ask how many of those 'perfectly healthy' trees 
subsequently DID fall apart AND cause serious harm? And let's not only 
consider those trees that appear in press reports because some such 
event DID actually occur, but ALL trees that some local was 'concerned 
about'. Statistics please.

"The most important thing to know is what you don't know."
There again, it's quite handy to know stuff too.



On 29/09/2020 20:03, Wayne Tyson wrote:
Thanks for this contribution, John.

By the way, I'm changing the name of whatever I'm doing to "Tree
condition
and failure assessment study," thanks in large part to my fellow 
UKTC subscribers' keeping me on my toes.

I believe the gentleman's point is crystal-clear. In my study, I 
have
come
across uncounted cases where the locals were concerned about a tree, 
but were told by dismissive, condescending, finger-wagging officials 
that the locals must have ulterior motives for wanting the tree 
removed because an "inspection" found that the tree was "perfectly 
healthy." He just finds that frustratingly ironic. Unfortunately, 
his situation appears to be rather common. Here in the US, 
taxpayers, not the officials, must pay the
six- to eight-figure settlements and judgments.

"The most important thing to know is what you don't know." --M. Mead

Wayne

Stay safe, well, and happy!

On Tue, Sep 29, 2020 at 1:56 AM Jerry Ross <trees@xxxxxxxxxx.co.uk>
wrote:

Well, god knows, we all need to keep ourselves cheerful!



On 29/09/2020 09:49, John Hearne wrote:
He's actually quite pragmatic about his refusal of consent and I 
think
is
just keeping himself amused and cheerful. He has far more serious 
and worrying issues on his plate at the moment and he has his tree 
concerns firmly in perspective.

J

On Tue, Sep 29, 2020 at 9:13 AM Jerry Ross <trees@xxxxxxxxxx.co.uk>
wrote:
Day-brightening perhaps. But the sub-text is... what??
That trees with decay should be felled irrespective of their location?
That someone is 'to blame' when a tree that shows no symptoms 
'goes
over'?
That all the other nearby trees which (annoyingly) show a similar 
absence of symptoms should be felled?

I admire his style but question his subject matter. Perhaps the 
writer should confine his pensées amusantes to more 
straightforward issues of public concern, such pubs closing at 10 
o'clock or bags of dog faeces hung up in hedges. It's not as if 
the modern world is short of matters ripe for satire




On 29/09/2020 07:54, John Hearne wrote:
I thought I'd share a couple of emails from a client who has 
been
refused
consent to fell his honey fungus infected Oak. They brightened 
my
day.

1st email:

Must tell you - do you recall I mentioned to you that I have 
been watching a couple of oaks at Pamphill, and which appeared 
to my untrained eye inclined to disease?

You do?  Wonderful.

Well, one of them has fallen over.

I'll try to send you some pics tomorrow, but it is awfully
interesting:
the tree was in full leaf when it fell and looked quite healthy 
in
terms
of the amount of leaf it was producing, although it also had 
obvious bark damage at the base to the extent of a quite large 
hole and where (so my grand-daughter informed me) Mister Foxy 
lived.  I'm not sure about that, as I think he moved to a small 
housing estate just
outside
Newbury some years ago and is currently undergoing trans-sexual 
rehab with a partner named Ferret.

However, and be that as it may - I digress.

A nearby notice records that it was afflicted with Honey Fungus, 
and other fungi of the conjecturally damned.

The fact of the matter is that it has gorn over.  A dog-walker 
there told me that it had gone over of its own accord and no 
tree surgical assistance was required.  Another tree nearby has 
been felled because
of
the presence of various fungi according to another National 
Trust Proclamation and there is considerable evidence of large 
broken limbs
of
various trees there and in the woods thereabouts.

2nd email:

FYI:    Please find attached some pics of a small (beech, I think?)
tree
which offered a lady staying in a caravan just outside Blandford 
on Friday last the amenity of falling upon her, the caravan, a 
dog and
her
car.
I spoke to one of the other caravanners there and he said that 
it was not particularly windy when it fell and that it looked in 
much the
same
condition as the others around it.

The lady apparently had the further amenity of being removed 
from the wreckage by firemen and taken to Southampton hospital 
by
air-ambulance.
I don't know her condition.





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The UKTC forum is supported by Bosky Trees arboricultural consultancy 
and Stockholm Tree Pits https://www.stockholmtreepits.co.uk




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The UK Tree Care mailing list
To unsubscribe send mailto:uktc-unsubscribe@xxxxxx.tree-care.info

The UKTC forum is supported by Bosky Trees arboricultural consultancy and
Stockholm Tree Pits
https://www.stockholmtreepits.co.uk




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The UK Tree Care mailing list
To unsubscribe send mailto:uktc-unsubscribe@xxxxxx.tree-care.info

The UKTC forum is supported by Bosky Trees arboricultural consultancy and
Stockholm Tree Pits
https://www.stockholmtreepits.co.uk