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Report on emergency felling of four stonewall trees at Bonham Road

     The Highways Department (HyD) today (August 12) said that the report on the felling of four stonewall trees at Bonham Road in Western District on August 7 has been uploaded onto the department's website for public information. The HyD will submit the report to the Expert Panel on Tree Management and will also report to the Central and Western District Council.

     Subsequent to the collapse of one of the stonewall trees listed on the Register of Old and Valuable Trees and the removal of another tree in poor condition on July 22 at the said location, the HyD had been closely monitoring the conditions of the remaining four stonewall trees.

     Though the four trees concerned had already been pruned on July 22 to reduce risks of collapse, the HyD found new cracks on the parapet wall on the top of the stonewall on August 5 and observed signs that the cracks were worsening subsequently. In addition, gaps were noticed along the crest of a drainage channel at the base of the parapet wall, and along the bottom of a railing at the coping of the stonewall at St Stephen's Lane.

     The above showed the anchorage of the trees had been affected and the situation was worsening, leading to the risks of imminent collapse of the trees. Given the physical and site constraints, the HyD urgently removed the trees on August 7 for the sake of public safety in the absence of any other feasible mitigation measures.

     The report on the details of the incident has been uploaded to the HyD's website (www.hyd.gov.hk).

Ends/Wednesday, August 12, 2015