Thursday, 16 February 2017

TREE OF DEATH

Trees are healthy, but are they “safe”?

CAN we tell when a tree will fall? The National Parks Board (Nparks) was quick to say that all trees in the Singapore Botanic Gardens’ Palm Valley had been inspected and were safe, after a woman was killed and four others were injured by a falling heritage tree on Saturday (Feb 11).

But at the same time, authorities were quick to point out that the fallen 270-year old tree had been inspected in September 2016 and was healthy.

So, is the announcement about healthy trees supposed to reassure the public, or is it that any tree could fall, even a seemingly healthy one?

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1 killed, 4 injured after huge Tembusu tree falls at Botanic Gardens
One woman was killed after being hit by a falling Tembusu tree at Singapore Botanic Gardens on Sat (Feb 11)

A 40m-tall Tembusu tree fell at the Singapore Botanic Gardens (SBG) on Sat (Feb 11) afternoon, killing one and injuring four people.

Police said that a 38-yr-old female Indian national died. Her husband, a 39-yr-old French national, and their two children, aged one, were injured. A 26-yr-old female Singaporean was also injured in the incident.

The National Parks Board (NParks) said that the tree was more than 270 years old and predated the establishment of the Gardens. It fell and brought down surrounding palm trees.

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Botanic Gardens safe for visit: NParks
Members of the public left flowers at outside the cordon where workers are still cutting & removing the heritage Tembusu tree, on Feb 12, 2017.ST FOTO: SEAH KWANG PENG

All the trees in the Singapore Botanic Gardens' Palm Valley have been found to be safe after a detailed check, with more inspections to follow, said the National Parks Board (NParks) yesterday, a day after a falling Tembusu tree killed a woman & injured several others.

NParks said it will conduct more checks on trees in the vicinity of the Palm Valley, such as the Rainforest, and on all the heritage trees in the Gardens.

"We want to assure the public that we share concerns about the safety of our trees in the Singapore Botanic Gardens, especially in view of the recent spate of intense weather conditions," said its commissioner of parks & recreation Leong Chee Chiew in a statement.

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No effort will be spared to ensure Botanic Gardens remains safe: Lawrence Wong
The Tembusu tree that fell was more than 270 yrs old & predates the establishment of the Singapore Botanic Gardens

No effort will be spared to ensure that the Botanic Gardens remains safe for the public, said National Development Minister Lawrence Wong on Sun (Feb 12), a day after a massive Tembusu tree toppled, killing a woman and injuring 4 others there.

Mr Wong noted in a Facebook post that it is unusual for a Tembusu tree, especially one recently assessed to be healthy, to fall without any warning, & that the National Parks Board (NParks) has asked arborists and experts to investigate the matter.

The tree had been inspected last September & given a clean bill of health.

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Woman killed by tree ‘a rising star’ in Mastercard

The woman who died after a Tembusu heritage tree in the Singapore Botanic Gardens toppled on Saturday was 38-year-old Indian national Radhika Angara, who moved to Singapore in 2013, TODAY has learnt. Her husband, French national Jerome Rouch-Sirech, 39, & their twins, who had turned a year old this month, were among 4 people injured. The other is a 26-yr-old Singaporean woman.

They have all been discharged from the National University Hospital.

At the time of her death, Ms Angara had been working as the regional digital marketing head (Asia-Pacific) at Mastercard for almost 4 months.

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Tembusu Tree Collapse
The 32-metre Tembusu tree that collapsed on Saturday was one of 40 heritage trees in our Botanic Gardens

Standing for 270 yrs now, the tree featured heavily in our bid to get the Gardens recognised as a Unesco World Heritage Site.

It’s so iconic that it even has a place on our S$5 notes.

In short, it can’t simply be allowed to collapse unless it was deliberately destroyed due to unexpected catastrophe.

related: Heritage Tembusu Tree Collapses, Killing Expat and Injuring 4 Others

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1 dead, 4 injured after 40m tall Tembusu tree falls at Botanic Gardens

Stompers Helen, Kelly, Othman, Faith & Eugene alerted Stomp to an incident of a 40m tall tree falling at the Botanic Gardens at 4.25pm today, killing one and injuring 4.

The Stompers were visiting the Botanic Gardens when the incident occurred, & photos and videos they took show the aftermath of the huge tree's fall.

A concert called "Canada 150: Celebrating Diversity through Music and Film", which was supposed to take place at the stage from 5pm to 7pm, was cancelled after the incident.

related:
Tree falls on taxi along CTE, smashing rear windscreen
Heart-stopping moment when tree falls onto 2 vehicles along Upper Aljunied Road
Ex-national athlete studying @ NTU dies after getting hit by falling tree during storm

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Tembusu tree toppled at Singapore Botanic Gardens, causing a death of mother and injured four other

A massive Tembusu tree toppled at the Singapore Botanic Gardens on Saturday (11 February), causing a death to a 38-year-old Indian national woman and injured four others.

The incident, which took place near Symphony Stage, interrupted an event held by High Commission of Canada which was due to start at 5pm that evening.

Singapore Civil Defence force (SCDF) stated that it was alerted to the incident at 4.25pm, adding that the five people were conveyed to National University Hospital (NUH).

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270-year-old Tembusu topples in Botanic Gardens killing 1 and injuring 4 others

One person died and four others were injured yesterday after a 270-year-old Tembusu tree fell at the Singapore Botanic Gardens (SBC), interrupting an event organised by the High Commission of Canada that was scheduled to start at 5pm.

According to the SBC’s website, the 40m tall  tree with a girth of 6.5m was the largest of its kind in the Gardens. The Gardens has cancelled all programmes at the Gardens today (12 Feb 2017) due to the incident.

Eyewitnesses said that members of the public worked together to help free people after the tree toppled. Police have confirmed that the deceased is a 38-year-old Indian national. Her husband, a 39-year-old French national and their two children, both one-year-old were injured in the incident. A 26-year-old female Singaporean was also injured.

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All Palm Valley trees in Singapore Botanic Gardens are safe, says NParks after fatal accident

The National Parks Board (NParks) has completed a check of all the trees in Palm Valley in the Singapore Botanic Gardens and they are safe, it said in an update on Sunday (Feb 12).

This comes after an incident of a 40m tall Tembusu tree, that was more than 270-years-old, falling and killing one woman and injuring four others, which Stompers Helen, Kelly, Othman, Faith and Eugene alerted Stomp.

A 38-year-old woman, an Indian national, died while her husband, who is French, was hurt, reports The Straits Times. Their two children, both one, and a 26-year-old Singaporean woman were also injured.

related: Tree Tags

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Another tree falls, this time at Yuan Ching Rd: 1 victim sent to hospital

In a 2nd such incident in days, a woman was taken to hospital on Mon (Feb 13) after a tree fell in a carpark on Yuan Ching Road

Citizen journalism website Stomp was alerted to a tree that had fallen at the carpark of Blk 134D Yuan Ching Rd on Monday (Feb 13), barely 2 days after a 270-year-old Tembusu tree fell and killed one woman at the Singapore Botanic Gardens. The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) told the website: "The SCDF received a call for assistance at about 2.30pm at the carpark of Blk 134D Yuan Ching Road.

"One ambulance was dispatched to the scene, and a person was conveyed to Ng Teng Fong General Hospital."

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Woman seriously injured by falling tree in carpark
The tree fell in the carpark of a block of student apartments, injuring a woman who was visiting one of the tenants.FOTO: ST READER

In the 2nd such incident in days, a woman was seriously injured yesterday after a tree fell at a car- park in Yuan Ching Road.

In photos sent to The Straits Times, a tree appears to have fallen on the open passenger door of a lorry, crushing its window.

The tree fell in the carpark of a block of student apartments. The woman was visiting one of the tenants. She is understood to be Ms Cher Hwee Hwang, 48.

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Deadly and Damaging Tree-Falls Raise Questions about NParks Efforts at Ensuring Public Safety

Two tree-falls in one day because of rain in different parts of Singapore. This happened yesterday morning after a heavy that started at about 5.30am. It raises questions as to whether the NParks, which falls under the purview of the Ministry of National Development, is out and about doing its job to ensure the public is safe from old trees.

In the morning, a huge tree that fell along the Ayer Rajah Expressway caused a chain collision between a car, lorry and public bus. Luckily no one was badly injured.

At Holland Close, a tree about 8-floors high came tumbling down, damaging gas pipes and cutting supply to more than 100 households. The branches of the huge tree smashed windows of 5 units of Block 1 Holland CLose, but luckily again, there were no casualties.

related: Accident Lands Construction Site Worker in Coma just as Wife Finds Out She’s Pregnant Again

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Tree Falls and Smashes Taxi during Rainstorm

A horrifying accident on the CTE towards the SLE yesterday, near the Ang Mo Kio Avenue 5 exit.

One that almost killed a taxi driver and his passenger.

It was raining heavily and a tree fell and crashed into the taxi, smashing its windshield, roof and rear windscreen.

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Huge Tree Collapses and Crushes Overhead Bridge at Braddell Road

Residents of Bishan St 12 were all ready for bed when they heard a loud crashing sound.

They rushed to their windows to take a look, thinking a car accident had taken place, and were shocked to find that a huge tree had collapsed, crushing an overhead bridge that linked Bishan to Toa Payoh North.

The incident happened at around 11pm last night.

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Fallen trees as heavy rain batters Singapore
Huge tree falls on bus near Block 203 in Commonwealth Avenue West

Heavy rain caused a tree to fall on an SMRT bus at a bus stop in front of Block 203, Commonwealth Avenue West yesterday (Oct 7).

Stomper Angela came across the scene at around 5.15pm and sent in photos.

"When I reached, there were no more passengers on board and only one driver seated in the bus. You can see him if you zoom in on one of the the pictures."

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More than 100 trees uprooted over the weekend

More than 100 trees in total were uprooted over the weekend because of stormy weather and exceptionally strong localised winds.

The National Parks Boards (NParks) told the media that 13 trees were Sunday uprooted near the tracks at Changi Beach Park while another 100 were discovered to have fallen within the park itself.

Heavy rains had also saturated and softened the soil in the area. A total of 10 more trees in other parts or S'pore were also affected by the strong winds

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