I’m reminded of the untimely death of a young boy almost 20 years ago, who was killed by a falling branch while visiting the Royal Botanical Gardens in Hamilton.
I am also aware of what happened at the San Antonio Zoo this past spring when a very large tree branch fell from a cedar elm and injured five children and two adults.
Closer to home, I’m sure that some of you may be aware that a woman in Toronto’s Trinity Bellwoods Park was struck and killed by a sizeable falling tree branch in July this year.
As a matter of fact, this was the second death that has occurred in the same park due to falling tree branches.
Here in Niagara-on-the-Lake, I have been concerned for some time about a few large dead oak trees that are, to my knowledge, either on Parks Canada or the Town of Niagara-on-the-Lake’s property.
They are located at the confluence of John Street and the Niagara Parkway.
An accident is waiting to happen.
It’s apparent that several large branches have already fallen from these trees.
Parks Canada and the Town of Niagara-on-the-Lake need to be more attentive to the ongoing health of the surrounding trees within the adjacent woodlot to safeguard not only the health of the trees but also the safety of the travelling public.
A systematic tree management maintenance program needs to be implemented forthwith. Regular ongoing inspections of all trees that are proximate to the public should be conducted.
In the case of Parks Canada, it should either contract the removal of the affected dead trees or secure the services of the Niagara Parks Commission at a reimbursable cost to this provincial agency.
It would be my hope that the removal of these trees would be done in an expeditious manner before an accident occurs.
There is no excuse for inattentiveness especially when the safety of the travelling public is at risk.
Get on with the removal of these trees to avoid costly litigation expenses in the future.