a little east of reality

Thursday, January 12, 2006

the december storm

Recently we've had a few thunderstorms, but the one I mentioned in my December 4 post did some damage. At our house we were relatively lucky: a couple of trees fell in the back yard, but not towards the house. One fell into the yard, but the other hit the carport, denting it, but not causing any structural damage.

The neighbours across the road were not so lucky. A branch fell from the enormous tree in the front of their yard and put a big hole in the roof, letting the rain stream into their bedroom. When I arrived home, the State Emergency Services were already up on their roof placing a tarpaulin to stop the rain getting in. The trouble is that we've been in semi-drought conditions for a few years now and the ground water levels are getting so low that there isn't enough water to sustain the really big trees. This storm highlighted how weak those really big trees are getting under these weather conditions. At or directly surrounding our house there were six big trees down.

One of my next door neighbours lost a 50 year old Christmas tree - kinda sad considering this happened just a few weeks before Christmas. They put lights on it every year usually.

My other next door neighbour lost a big gum tree that fell straight across our road. The SES work on a triage system - trees that cause house damage are dealt with first. This was inconvenient, but only posed a real hazard after dark when cars might not see it in time to stop. Consequently it stayed there for 3 hours blocking traffic. They did come back before dark though, to chain saw it into moveable pieces and at least get it off the road.