Training to focus on risk from storm-damaged trees

BLACKSBURG, Va. (AP) — The Virginia Department of Forestry is conducting training this week to give certified arborists hands-on experience in identifying the risk that storm-damaged trees pose to people and property on publicly managed land.

Urban Forest Strike Team Task Specialist training will be conducted at Virginia Tech Tuesday through Thursday.

The teams are deployed to help communities with assessment of storm-damaged trees with the goal to retain as many viable trees as possible. Data from the teams helps prepare communities to apply for financial assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to mitigate storm damage.

UFST Teams were created in 2007 following lessons learned in trying to retain storm-damaged public trees after Hurricane Katrina. Since 2008, UFST teams have been deployed nationally to about 44 incidents to assist communities in post-storm recovery.

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