GLENDALE, Mo. – Wednesday morning’s storms created a lot of noise and spots of tree damage. FOX 2 meteorologist Angela Hutti had a large limb fall in her backyard. When she called about getting it removed, she was told they’d have to wait a few weeks to have it cleared away.

Lightning destroyed a tree in Frontenac on Wednesday, closing Spoede Road while it was cleaned up. Tree damage like that must be cleared immediately for public safety, but what about smaller trees and large limbs that homeowners can’t clear themselves?

“Sometimes, you might have a humungous problem but it’s not really threatening anything. So, unfortunately, you’ve got to triage and decide is this something that has to be done right away or can it wait a couple of weeks,” said certified arborist John Beckman, Allen’s Tree Service.

Beckman says this is the busiest time of year for tree companies. Regularly scheduled pruning and tree maintenance keeps crews busy, so they aren’t available for non-emergency storm damage. On top of that, staffing shortages also play a part in slower service times.

“When COVID hit, we just stopped seeing applicants come in. People were gravitating towards easier jobs and things like that. And tree work is tough,” he said.

If you have a tree or large limb down, be cautious. You never know when how limbs may spring, or logs may roll if you try to do the job yourself. Give a tree company a call, because they can come out and give you an expert opinion and point out hidden dangers.

“Even if it seems like a very routine thing that you can take care of yourself, there may be hidden dynamics that, as a general homeowner, you don’t recognize,” Beckman said.

To make sure you get the job done right, Beckman suggests getting references from neighbors when hiring a tree service. You can also reach out to the St. Louis Arborist Association, whose members are insured and go through ongoing training.