Municipal tree risk assessment in the United States: Findings from a comprehensive survey of urban forest management
AbstractAwareness of tree risk assessment and management has risen in the United States in recent years. This has been prompted by publications such as the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standard for tree risk assessment (ANSI A300 Part 9 ? Tree Risk Assessment) and the accompanying International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) Tree Risk Assessment Best Management Practices, as well as the subsequent development of the ISA Tree Risk Assessment Qualification. How this increase in awareness has broadly translated into common practice in communities, is not well understood. This paper reports findings from a recent survey of urban forest operations as they directly pertain to tree risk assessment. The survey consisted of a 109-question long-form questionnaire that was sent to 1727 communities, followed up by a truncated version to non-responding communities. Six hundred and sixty-seven (38.6%) communities responded to the survey ? 513 to the full survey and 154 to the truncated version. Communities that reported having a certified arborist on staff (p-value = .010), a strategic plan (p-value = .002), an updated inventory (p-value < .001), collecting risk data (p-value = .004), and having a past claim for damage or injury (p-value < .001) were more likely to regularly conduct tree risk management activities.
Volume, Issue, Page Number38, 4, 218-229