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What To Do With Fallen Trees in Westport

WESTPORT, Conn. – Hurricane Irene may have brought them down, but fallen trees on your property are your responsibility to clean up, Director of Westport Public Works Stephen Edwards said Wednesday.

"If a town tree falls on private property, the residents of that property are responsible for it. But if a private tree falls onto town property, we will clean it up," Edwards said.

The public works department doesn't offer this service because employees cannot go onto private property because of liability issues, said Edwards. However, homeowners who had to have a town tree removed from their property are entitled to seek reimbursement, he added.

But whether a homeowner is reimbursed is up to the town's insurance carrier, not the town, Edwards said. "If the town was negligent in some way and that's why the tree fell, the insurance company would probably pay," he said. "But if it was an act of God that brought the tree down, we're typically not held responsible."

Residents who need to dispose of fallen trees or large branches may do so at the yard waste site at 180 Bayberry Lane, behind the Westport Weston Health District, Edwards said. To help accommodate residents with post-Irene cleanup, both the yard waste site and the transfer station on Sherwood Island Connector will hold extended hours through Saturday. The site will be open from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday and Friday and from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.

Residents with a full pickup truck load entering the yard waste site will be charged $30 per load. Vehicles larger than a conventional pickup will be charged $80 per ton. Residents with small amounts that can fit into a car will not be charged, Edwards said.

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