What is BS3998? – British standard for Tree work – recommendations
BS3998:2010 is a document, revised in 2010, which lays out the way in which all tree work should be carried out. It covers subject such as
- Work specification
- what should and should not be specified. i.e. avoid removing limb(s) to create an unbalanced tree likely to collapse
- how to specify the work – terms to be used and how to specify measurements
- how the site should be manages, storage of tools and equimpent
- Timings of works after prior pruning, root damage, water stress or defoliation
- How to decompact, remove and replace soil around trees
- How and when to prune trees
- Where to cut and how much to remove and more importantly how much to leave.
- How to make the final cut (target pruning)
- How to crown thin and crown lift
- Installation and management of cable bracing and propping (to support weak limbs)
- Management and removal of tree stumps
Unfortunately, a lot of tree surgeon claim to work to BS3998 and many don’t. Quite often tree surgeons claim to work to a standard they have not seen let alone read and understood.