Branches Trimmed by MCC Allowed to Rot Create Safety Hazards to Pedestrians near Mallikatta

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Branches Trimmed by Mangaluru City Corporation (MCC) Now Allowed to Rot Create safety Hazard to Pedestrians near Mallikatta (Mallikatta to Bendore Circle stretch of road)

Mangaluru: What action was taken by Mangaluru City Corporation (MCC) in trimming the branches of the decades-old trees which were posing a risk to pedestrians and motorists was a good thing, and needs to be appreciated. But, what is not appreciated is allowing the trimmed branches to pile up and rot along the stretch of Mallikatta to Bendore junction, which poses safety hazards to pedestrians young and old, as hundreds of students walk by to their schools/colleges Agnes Institutions, Bendore, Mangaluru.

It should be noted that the workers hired by MCC to do the needful in trimming the branches had done a good job, however, they were quick enough to haul away the tree trunks/solid wood pieces which they could sell and make a few extra bucks, but left behind the loose branches, since 18 August 2023, the artwork was completed. And with recent rains these branches are getting rot, making way for mosquito breeding, resulting in the spreading of Malaria and Dengue. And with thousands of pedestrians and motorists passing by it, it is a risky health issue. It has been close to a month that these branches have been left unattended.

Tree Cutters Hauled away the wooden logs/solid wood pieces & left behind Useless Tree Branches

Even though these decades-old trees have posed safety issues to the public, and in spite of complaints made, taking action by MCC took years to do needful, until August 2023 due to the recent heavy rains, where trees and branches fell and injured people and damaged properties at various parts of the City, and after lots of people complained to the Forest department and Mangaluru City Corporation. The authorities finally decided to trim the branches of the trees located on the stretch from Mallikatta to Bendore Circle near Vas Bakery/St Agnes College.

Not just this stretch of the road, If you look around the city there are quite a few trees which are on the verge of tumbling down. There are a few slanting trees on the NH 66 near Nanthoor Junction and a few of them on the Nanthoor-Kadri a Chef stretch which may collapse anytime. The slanting trees look most dangerous as they have grown old and now due to heavy rain or wind, they may fall to the road at any, time. The concerned officials have done the right thing by trimming only the BRANCHES and not CUT the trees, for the safety of the motorists and pedestrians, including school and college-going students near college-going institutions. A BIG THANK YOU to the MCC Commissioner, Mayor, Forest department authorities (for giving permission) and area ward Corporator Ms Kavya Nataraj and Manohar Shetty.

Lately, scores of old trees have fallen all over, the city following strong gales, resulting in damages to vehicles and property. Most of the trees had no room for their roots to spread out and this led to gradual decay. In other cases, growing trees had their branches cut regularly on one side because they leaned onto private property; the trees grew up lopsided and leaned far onto the roads. This means their remaining branches too were regularly being trimmed and they lost strength. The concerned authorities are expected to monitor a city-wide “tree census” to determine how many trees are really a danger to traffic or falling during heavy rain and strong. Trees which are unable to bear the air pollution and decaying should also be identified. But it seems like no one is doing their job right- and as a result, we have trees come crashing down, on vehicles etc. now and then.

The problem with. MCC authorities is that they wait till the trees fall, and then only take action–like many trees that have fallen due to rains recently. The safety of pedestrians and all road users should be the first and most important priority for National Highway authorities and also local authorities and also for a State body that has a responsibility in this area. Some of these trees may have disease, which is a clear indication of root rot. It is a matter of urgency that such hazardous trees are inspected and that those that appear in any way dubious should be promptly removed or trimmed before they crash down resulting in injuries or death to motorists or pedestrians.

I hope this report will convince or awaken the concerned officials to do the needful, in clearing the mess of trimmed branches lying for a long time, posing inconveniences and safety hazards to the public.

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