For more information about tree mortality in Calaveras County visit http://treemortality.co.calaveras.ca.us/ online or contact Dr. Richard Harris, the county’s Tree Mortality Program Manager at rrharrisconsulting@gmail.com or (707) 685-5508.

Calaveras County administrators have hired another contractor to identify, mark and remove hazard trees that are dead or dying as a result of drought and bark beetle infestation.

Calaveras County contracted with TSS Consultants of Sacramento to identify, mark and remove drought-killed and beetle-killed hazard trees in places like the Ebbetts Pass/Blue Lake Springs subdivision, where more than 8,700 dead trees were identified in May and June 2016.

Foresters with TSS Consultants will be out on county roads, marking trees that pose a threat to

motorists and infrastructure on rights-of-way, on adjacent private properties, and on publicly managed lands. The contracted foresters are supposed to be wearing orange-and-green vests with reflective stripes and carrying Calaveras County identification cards.

Hazard trees will be marked for removal. Trees on private property that pose a threat will be identified, and property owners will be notified by mail with requests for entry onto their properties for closer evaluation.

“It is critical that property owners receiving ROE forms sign and return them within 10 days, so the hazard trees can be mitigated in a timely manner,” Calaveras County staff said in an announcement.

Once foresters have identified a significant number of dead rees, multiple contractors will begin work removing hazard trees. When tree removal work starts, motorists can expect delays and road closures.

County staff say there will be no cost to property owners. But private property owners who choose not to have their hazardous trees mitigated remain liable for damages caused by hazardous trees falling onto county roads.

Contact Guy McCarthy at gmccarthy@uniondemocrat.com or (209) 588-4585. Follow him on Twitter @GuyMcCarthy.

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