Local News

Jul 31, 2014 11:59 AM by Rachel Cole - rcole@kristv.com

Residents Worry about Dead Trees Rotting and Getting Chopped Down

SINTON - Severe drought continues to take its toll. The latest victims appear to be those beautiful old oak trees in San Patricio County. The county is now cutting down many of those trees but some citizens think it never should have come to this.

Crews spent the last two days cutting down four huge trees out front of the courthouse and County Judge Terry Simpson says, it's all for safety.

"Limbs like this one here that we're going to trim out of this tree, if it falls and somebody's underneath it, they're going to get hurt," he said.

Judge Simpson says, a man called him about 30 days ago to let him know, one of the dead branches did fall on his car.

"I was concerned that we damaged his vehicle but he kind of laughed and said no, it didn't hurt the vehicle, he said it was a pick up and it fell in the bed," Judge Simpson added.

But long time resident Leslie Ratliff isn't laughing, she's not happy to see the beautiful trees slashed down into debris.

"Sinton has lots and lots of old Oak trees and it's an older community and it just breaks my heart to see that happen," Ratliff said.

The decision to chop them down, came after TxDOT crews and Sat Patricio county officials spotted the rotting wood at the base of the trees.

"There were some dead trees here that need attention before someone got hurt," Judge Simpson said.

Ratliff says, that being cautious is a good move by the county. Although, she wonders what will be done in the future to preserve the trees.

"I would certainly not want anyone to get hurt or property to be damaged but I don't know maybe we could just water them a little more," she added.

The county currently waters once a week and plans to re-plant new trees at a later time. For now, crews will clear the clutter and take the branches to the fair grounds, where it will be recycled for wood.

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