Tree Removal Improves Road Safety
County staff is committed to preserving and protecting trees that enhance the experience of living and working in Elbert County and define the unique rural landscape that residents and visitors enjoy, however Elbert County Road & Bridge first has the important responsibility and obligation to maintain all County roadways and right-of-ways.
Trees are a crucial part of our environment and provide erosion control, animal habitat, conserve water and are important to air and noise pollution mediation. They are beautiful and necessary, but in the wrong place, can cause safety concerns, especially along the roadway.
The County’s Road and Bridge department has developed a tree removal policy to outline the procedures taken for roadway maintenance and to aid in communication with homeowners along affected roadways. The policy allows an avenue for homeowners adjacent to the identified area the opportunity to transplant trees within a specified time-period. When there are dead trees or trees that have been identified as impeding function of roadway maintenance, they are marked and scheduled for trimming or removal according to policy.
Tree removal operations take place in the winter months, when staff is available and weather is conducive to safely removing the trees.
Reasons for Tree Removal
Trees are removed when there is a health, safety or operational hazard along the roadway, including the following:
• Road and drainage improvements;
• Construction of new roadway;
• To fix a driving hazard or improve sight distance;
• The tree is dead or dying;
• Roots are causing damage to the road or other infrastructure;
• Trees inhibit drainage or roadside maintenance;
• Wildfire mitigation.
Tree removal in County right-of-way improves safety for drivers including increasing sight distances for blind curves and wildlife in the roadway. It is the County’S goal to only remove trees that pose a safety or operational concern in order to preserve the natural beauty of the County.