“Sounded like firecrackers” when huge tree at Central Elementary came down

Fallen tree at Central Elementary
Fallen tree at Central Elementary (July 14, 2017). Photo: Discover Ferndale

A large tree on the north corner of the Central Elementary School grounds suddenly collapsed to the ground Monday, July 10th. A neighbor across the street was outside and said it startled her, sounding like “a bunch of firecrackers going off.”

The Ferndale School District (FSD) had been concerned about the tree and cordoned off that corner of the school grounds several months prior.

According to FSD Assistant Superintendent Mark Deebach, the district contacted Puget Sound Energy (PSE) in January of this year to remove the branches that were into the power lines. Unfortunately, according to a PSE Media Contact Janet Kim, a service order was created but got lost on its way to being assigned to a crew (PSE is investigating). Deebach said they made repeated requests of PSE. In the mean time, caution tape was placed around area to keep people away.

When the tree came down on its own, it missed the building, power lines and a van that was parked on the school grounds. Since then, crews have cut up the tree and hauled it away. Deebach said the remaining stump will be ground down sometime in the not too distant future.

tree at Central Elementary via bing maps (June 4, 2015) streetside view
Tree at Central Elementary School 2 years before collapsing (June 4, 2015). Photo via Bing maps streetside view