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tree fell on my house

Shane J.

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Yikes! I have been lucky twice. After Hurricane Irma in September 2017, a 100-foot oak missed our house by less than 3 feet:




Apart from buckling a few tin roof panels, this pine did no structural damage in 2015. A neighbor called at 0800. We had to drive up from Atlanta, I got it off the house, and put a tarp over the roof, then we drove back and caught a 3:00 p.m. flight to California. That was a long day.






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6 hours ago, Shane J. said:

This is going to cut into my riding time. Long process ahead to rebuild the crushed half of the dome.

Oh man, Shane, that’s no fun! I love trees but there are drawbacks (you know that house on Black lake-Belmore that always has flamingos? We considered buying that but passed in part because of the beautiful but gigantic trees all clustered around the house). 

I’ve got some time - how can I help? 


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The flamingo house was cool, constantly rearranging the flock for the seasons and reasons. Those trees there are 150+ years old, I think you would have been safe there, but what a busy street to live on.

This week is an appraiser, an engineer, and an adjuster, so by the end of the week we should have a path charted out. I think we may be able to only replace 10 triangles and do a re-roof and a bunch of patching indoors. When the tree hit it transmitted so much force to the dome that it momentarily got shorter and wider, which buckled many seams in drywall, both in the dome and interior walls. Macy and I were downstairs and it was like a bomb went off with the shock wave and sound physically shaking our bodies. I ran outside with a flashlight and Macy ran upstairs. We were both in shock and met again by the back door to convey what we had each found. The rain had stopped, but not the wind and large branches were still flying through the air and bouncing off the dome as the sound of broken glass continued to tinkle in the background. The tree stopped so fast when it hit the dome that it broke apart in three spots, with the top piece ending up on the garage, another break at the top of the dome, and one farther down the trunk at the ground level. Where it broke there the log is 24" in diameter and it just shattered. My son did some calculations and estimates the collision was the equivalent of 3 sticks of dynamite going off outside. Here is photo of the rootball that came up.




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2 hours ago, Shane J. said:

The flamingo house was cool, constantly rearranging the flock for the seasons and reasons. Those trees there are 150+ years old, I think you would have been safe there, but what a busy street to live on.

The woman who did the flamingos is moving to yelm - asked if she was gong to keep doing them there but she was not sure. You’re probably right about the trees, and there was a very nice shop, but...


That’s quite a lot of wood to land on the roof. Do you think the dome survived better than a traditional truss? It sounds like it did a great job dissipating the force rather than just letting the tree fall through one section. (Though maybe then there’d be less drywall to replace.)

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I do think the dome was stronger than traditional construction, otherwise that tree would have been through the roof and possibly through the second floor as well. Instead the force was spread out away from the point of impact. The drywall literally exploded at the impact. And that is 5/8" type X drywall. It was ripped right off of all the nails. 

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