WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN NO ONE WILL HELP YOU? A VERY DANGEROUS CONDITION EXISTS AND EVERYONE HAS TURNED A DEAF EAR TO THE PROBLEM.
December 18, 2002
For the last couple weeks we have heard a creaking noise coming from the corner of our house. We checked all around the house, in the eves and couldn't find anything that would cause the sound of wood being ripped apart. Today, while waiting for my 7 year old daughter's school bus to bring her home at 3 pm, I noticed a tree leaning - this tree is being held up only by the telephone cable stretched from the pole at the road to the corner of my home. The tree has been dead in excess of 10 years and is now coming out of the ground, leaning almost at a 45-degree angle. The tree belongs to our neighbors, Mark & Kim Gaines. I called Kim immediately and notified her about the hazard. She pretty much blew me off saying she would let Mark know when he got home. Mark got home and nothing was done. My husband tried calling them again only to get their answering machine - yet they were home. We left a message but it seems to have fallen on deaf ears. Our phone call went unanswered. I called the State Police to ask, "What do we do?" There was nothing they could do for me. I called Verizon - they told me since I wasn't their customer, to bad. I called my phone provider, Broadview, who in turn called whom else, Verizon. Verizon said they would try to get to the line tomorrow - they would ONLY run a new line to my home and then CUT the cable that is supporting the tree. Once that cable is cut, the tree will fall across the road and take out the main trunk line for all the phones in the neighborhood. Niagara Mohawk sent someone out to look at the situation - since it wasn't a "power" line, there was nothing they were willing to do. I called Adelphia - they said they would send someone out to "look" at it tomorrow afternoon BUT if the tree was a hazard, they would not do anything. If the phone cable breaks that's attached to my house, it will rip the corner of my home off. The cable will become a whip. The tree will fall - across the phone lines running along the front of my home down the street, bringing them down and causing service outages for everyone. This tree will then lie across my driveway and across Kline Road. If the phone lines are down, I won't even be able to dial 911 to even report the hazard. My biggest FEAR is that this tree will fall onto a school bus or car driving down our road. There are many school buses passing here every day. As it is right now, I cannot safely leave my home, nor can anyone enter it. It's dangerous. I have a child that waits at the end of the driveway for the school bus every morning - right in the path of this tree. Yet, no one will help me. Not Verizon, Adelphia, Mohawk or the police. This is the 3rd tree incident in the past 10 years involving the same neighbor. They just don't care about maintaining the trees on their property. The first tree incident did $1600.00 damage to my car that I was stuck paying for. We took our daughter to a school function tonight and upon our return home, the tree was leaning even more. It's at approximately a 45-degree angle. With the warm weather thawing the ground, rain and wind forecasted for today, I'm afraid of what might happen sooner than later. Who do we turn to for help? I cannot afford to pay to have someone else's tree cut down, nor will anyone since itÂs NOT on MY property - and at the same time, I don't want damage to my home or worse yet, a serious injury. I sent in this letter to Action 7 - WKBW - they told me to call the Town Supervisor/Highway Department. I spoke with Channel 4 Call 4 Action and was basically told the same thing. No help??? Homeowners must be responsible for their property and not put others at risk.
Thursday, December 19, 2002
Update Verizon sent a single person in a van with a ladder. The man took one look and said, "Lady, I can't cut that wire - it's the only thing holding that tree up". He said he was going to notify his supervisor but since they're not in the "tree service", there isn't much they're going to be able to do. I called Verizon back again and was told that the supervisor refused to do anything about it since it would put their men in danger.
Adelphia sent one person in a van with a ladder. Since it's not an Adelphia line, he also walked away and wished me good luck.
I called the Lewiston Town Hall - can't get anything but voice mail - not even the operator will answer. Operator calls are directed to a "General" voice mailbox. Channel 4 left two messages for the Town Supervisor Sandy Maislin. As of this writing, neither has been returned.
4:30 pm - I finally got through to the Town Supervisor's Secretary, Barbara Ciche. She notified the Town Highway department of the pending danger.
5:00 pm - Steve Rider of the Town of Lewiston Highway Dept. arrived and said that since the tree is NOT on the Town's right of way, there was nothing he could do about it. When it falls and is on the road, then and only then can he do something to remove the tree off town property.
At this time, Kim Gaines was on her porch eavesdropping on the conversation I was having with Steve Rider. After I walked back towards my home, Kim approached Steve. As Kim was walking back to her home, I asked her if she had called a tree service to take care of the tree and was told out loud "Mind your own ****ing business". Well it IS my business when the only thing holding that tree up is attached to my roof!
Friday, December 20, 2002
It's very windy out and raining. The tree/wire is ripping at my roof. The school bus driver expressed her "fear" of having to drive past the area where the tree is bound to fall. The tree has been bouncing off the phone cable all day. ItÂs impossible to stay in my bedroom because of the noise of the wood being ripped apart. So far nothing has been done to remove the tree or the hazard it poses and still, no one will help me. I have a house full of company coming over on Xmas Eve and Xmas day. I'm afraid someone is going to get seriously injured either by the tree falling or the wire ripping lose.
Anyone entering or leaving my house is in danger. Anyone driving past the area is in danger. The entire neighborhood is in danger of losing their phone service. Why wonÂt anyone help? I canÂt believe that everyone is turning a blind eye to the danger of this tree - including the homeowner!
Reply to post by Marilyn Delahoy, on December 20, 2002 at 19:19:19:
Seems that noon wants to foot the bill for it till it becomes an emergancy.
In my city, you could call the forrestry dept. and they would issue an order to remove the hazard/nusance or they would do it and asses the property invloved.
The town probalby sees it as something that would break their budget if they tried, and may not have authority to do it anyways.
You could retain a lawyer to ask a judge to order the neighbor to remove the tre, but it would borbably be cheaper in the long run to hire a tree company and a crane to remove the tree. Sounds like yor piece of mind is invloved here.
then pursue the neighbor in court for restitution because the tree was dead and a known risk. Take many pictures.
Reply to post by John Paul Sanborn, on December 20, 2002 at 19:19:19:
Americans are a lovely bunch, eh?
At this point, pending everyone with responsibility has been notified and warned, I'd park my automobile along with a few other prized possessions directly underneath the tree and let 'er rip. Then get the attorney and go for the throat.
Eye for an eye.
I'm taking your letter with a few deletions to the PR dept. at Verizon. Realizing it won't help get much done, they are very concerned about public image, if the right buttons are pressed. This is 2003, we're in America, nothing much is regulated anymore, especially honesty and integrity in business - anything goes.
quote:Originally posted by Reed: _Reply to post by _John Paul Sanborn_, on December 20, 2002 at 19:19:19:_<br /><br />Americans are a lovely bunch, eh? <br /><br />At this point, pending everyone with responsibility has been notified and warned, I'd park my automobile along with a few other prized possessions directly underneath the tree and let 'er rip. Then get the attorney and go for the throat.<br /><br />Eye for an eye. <br /><br />I'm taking your letter with a few deletions to the PR dept. at Verizon. Realizing it won't help get much done, they are very concerned about public image, if the right buttons are pressed. This is 2003, we're in America, nothing much is regulated anymore, especially honesty and integrity in business - anything goes.
Try fire marshall they usually deal with hazardous problems like this