Huge tree falls on home

2017-04-18 11:18
Lester Park residents Lana and Anton Verheijen spent their Saturday removing an enormous tree that fell onto their house earlier that morning. The couple and two of their neighbours said they had been asking the municipality to fell the trees just beyond their property for two years because they were afraid that the trees would fall onto their homes and hurt someone.

Lester Park residents Lana and Anton Verheijen spent their Saturday removing an enormous tree that fell onto their house earlier that morning. The couple and two of their neighbours said they had been asking the municipality to fell the trees just beyond their property for two years because they were afraid that the trees would fall onto their homes and hurt someone. (Supplied)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

A Lester Park couple were livid when a massive tree fell onto their roof and their two cars on Saturday.

The disaster allegedly followed warnings to Msunduzi Municipality for the past two years about the danger the tree posed.

Lana and Anton Verheijen said they heard a cracking sound at around 7 am and a large tree fell onto the roof of their home, cracking open the roof and damaging both their cars and the garden wall.

The Verheijens said they had been struggling to get the Msunduzi Municipality to fell the huge trees just beyond their garden wall for two years.

Anton said the trees growing on municipal land had become a problem for his family as well as two of his neighbours.

He said trees had fallen onto his property before, but this latest tree was the biggest one to fall and had caused the most damage.

His neighbour, Brian Duncan, said he’d had five trees fall on his property in the last two years on separate occasions.

He said each time one of the trees fell it broke down his garden wall, which had to be repaired repeatedly.

Verheijen said a few municipal contractors came to cut down the trees at the start of the April school holidays. But instead of felling the trees the contractors had “wedged” them and then left them for the weekend.

To wedge a tree is to remove a block of the trunk near the base in anticipation of cutting the tree down completely.

Verheijen said the tree was apparently wedged too close to the base and it had taken just a single gust of wind to push the tree over straight onto his house on Saturday.

“It is extremely frustrating. We have been complaining about this for years and when the contractors finally arrived they did not do a proper job,” said Verheijen.

Duncan said he was concerned that the next tree to fall would be one of the bigger trees that would “take my house out completely”.

He said he had spoken with the local ward councillors about the issue but nothing has happened.

Local ward councillor Glenn McArthur confirmed that he had spoken to Duncan previously about the tree issue and had referred the matter to the Msunduzi parks department.

He said he was aware the trees were a problem for the residents and had followed up with the department many times.

McArthur said there were “massive issues with people taking responsibility”.

He added that he had managed to chop down some trees in other areas but did not have the capacity to help with the large trees in Lester Park.

Msunduzi municipal spokesperson Thobeka Mafumbatha said a written complaint should be sent to the municipality about the issue and added that the proper processes on what to do next would be followed.


Read more on:    disaster management  |  pietermaritzburg

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
ADVERTORIAL
Competition regulation for a growing and inclusive economy

ADVERTORIAL: The Competition Commission of South Africa is conducting advocacy work in the South African automotive aftermarket industry and has gazetted a Draft Code of Conduct for public comment.

/News
 

Man scores date with tennis superstar after Twitter bet

It’s a modern day Cinderella story, but one American man took ‘shoot your shot’ seriously in 2017.

 
 

You won't want to miss...

Who are the highest paid models of 2017?
10 gorgeous plus-sized models who aren't Ashley Graham
5 top leg exercises for men
10 best dressed men of 2017
Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.