Tree risks need sensible control

Arboricultural Association (AA) director Nick Eden has warned that tree risk management must be proportional, despite high levels of public concern following injuries and deaths caused by falling branches.

"Nine people die in car accidents every day but only around five a year die from falling branches," he said. "But it's death caused by trees that get the headlines."

Eden was speaking after the Health & Safety Executive announced it will not be prosecuting the National Trust over the death of schoolboy Timothy Sutton. The boy was crushed by a falling tree at Dunham Massey in Cheshire four years ago.

The National Tree Safety Group, which includes the AA, will be publishing guidelines within the next few months on the appropriate risk management of trees and how to achieve it.

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