• Local woman says tree threatens her home and safety

    By: Beth Rousseau

    Updated:

    ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. - A local woman says a rotten tree is threatening her home and safety.

    The brown, barren tree stands out among the towering pines on Pearl Street in St. Augustine.

    Resident Kathryn Taylor told Action News Jax, “If it fell today or tomorrow with the winds and rains we’ve been receiving, it’s going to hit my home.”

    Taylor said after she notified the property owner, she also called St. Johns County code enforcement, and it sent out an inspector.

    According to Taylor, she learned a tree must have a rotted trunk, be a danger to people or property, and have no foliage for more than one year after the inspection.

    The grandmother wonders why she’d have to wait a year if the tree is deemed dangerous now.

    She explained, “I’m living there, and I have my grandchildren coming in on occasions, and I’m scared to have them to come.”

    Taylor said years ago, she paid to have another rotten tree taken down on the property.

    “I just knew it was a hazard, and I needed it removed, so I spent the money and had it removed,” she said.

    This time, she paid for an arborist to inspect the tree.

    The report says it’s in danger of imminent failure, that it should be removed immediately and that allowing it to remain in place could be considered gross negligence. 

    Action News Jax called the property owner, who said he’ll remove the tree as soon as he can afford to, but he doesn’t know when that will be.

    In the meantime, Taylor waits and worries about what she calls the danger leaning toward her home. 

    Action News Jax reached out to code enforcement to see what options she has to expedite the removal process. We have yet to hear back. 


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