Risk of House Damage By Tree

Castle Cove

A married couple purchased a single-storey brick residence in Castle Cove;  some years later, they noticed some cracking in the wall of part of the house, with this cracking being close to an immature Sydney Blue Gum tree on the adjoining property.  Later, as the tree grew, so to the cracks in the wall of the house.  In addition, movements were observed in other parts of the house, together with damage to drainage and other services.

SCE subsequently undertook several site inspections over a number of years as the tree and its root system grew, with resultant cracking of the house’s footing system and other additional damage.

Further to this damage, the couple then became concerned when the adjoining property (in whose yard the tree was located) proposed to develop their site with a duplex development. They engaged SCE to carry out a risk assessment report which found that the proposal, which was directly located below the now 20 m tall tree, posed an unacceptable risk to both property and life and suggested the removal of the tree under supervision.

As a result of this risk report, the tree has been removed.  However because the recommended supervision and stabilisation of the footings was not carried out, further cracking and settlement of the house of the married couple has occurred.