Cabling and Bracing
Cables and brace rods are supplemental structural supports intended to reduce the risk of failure of weak branches and multiple stems. Cables generally consist of extra high strength steel and are attached to bolts installed in the upper crown of a tree. They are intended to limit the movement of the supported branches so they are less likely to fail during storms. Braces are threaded rods that are installed through unions of weak branches and multiple stems to provide more rigid support from torsional (twisting) forces that can occur in violent weather. Bartlett Tree Experts developed cabling and bracing procedures in the early twentieth century that are the industry standards and still used today.
Tree management programmes on all properties should be proactive rather than reactive with treatments being applied preventively to maintain plant health rather than remedial once decline begins. Managers or owners of commercial properties which have high pedestrian traffic and where there is a need to ensure public safety should have their trees inspected regularly for structural defects including cracks, split crotches, decay, and other problems to prevent failures that could lead to personal injury or property damage. Supplemental structural support systems should only be installed based on a thorough inspection and evaluation of tree structure by our arborists. Materials and techniques must comply with published industry European standards. If trees have lightning protection systems, the conductor must be attached to any support cables in the crown. Property managers with supplemental structural support systems should contact Bartlett to inspect the system each year.