Bringing risky trees down before a tragedy

In December, contractors for ODOT put their skills to work in carefully bringing trees down near I-5’s northbound lanes just south of Woodburn. It was a continuation of work that began earlier in the year after several old, dying and hazardous cottonwood trees came to the attention of our District 3 Maintenance staff.Felled trees

Work like this is ongoing around the state. If potentially dangerous trees aren’t removed, they can fall into the road, causing closures or worse. In winter 2017-18, high winds in this same area blew down the older, weakened trees, with some landing in the road. Fortunately, no crashes occurred and no one was injured.

It’s not the end of the value these trees bring to the area though. Our crews supervised the felling of around 300 trees – many of which will stay in the wetlands where they land. That’s the balance we’re seeking with this kind of proactive work: prevent a tragedy, preserve the environment.