GARWOOD, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – It was a rude awakening for a Garwood couple Friday morning.
They woke up to an alarming scene on their front lawn, now they’re stuck with the bill to clean it up.
It happened at approximately 5:30 a.m. on Spruce Avenue near Maple Avenue.
“I heard a boom this morning and looked out the window, and unfortunately it came down and destroyed my fiancee’s vehicle and hit our home,” said homeowner Antonio Ferrera.
Ferrera was referring to a large Norway Maple that came down.
“This is what I do for work. This is what I use for my business. So it’s a little totaled right now. So it was a really fun way to to wake up this morning,” joked homeowner Hilda Felicies.
Felicies is Ferrara’s fiancee and just got the car in January, around the same time they aquired the house where Ferrara grew up.
A tree on their neighbor’s property fell and smashed into their home, they told Jakeway. They say because the tree landed on their home, they’ll have to foot the bill for removal.
“This is a good opportunity to warn young homeowners because we realized there was a potential collision at some point,” Felicies said.
They broached the topic of paying to take the tree down with their neighbor, but neither side followed through. Now the newly engaged couple has to foot the bill.
The tree also crushed their car and brought down a power line. PSEG says five customers lost power.
“When a tree falls, wherever it falls it becomes that person’s propert,” said Mark Gearrets of Precision Trees.
Gearrets is tree removal expert. He says that rule varies from state to state, but in New Jersey, it’s the law. When reached by phone, Susan Pares, whose owns the property the tree fell from, said moving forward she wants to join forces with her neighbor in asking the town to take down the trees that are their responsibility.
“They’re dangerous. We’re getting storms. They’re not safe. That other tree should’ve been knocked down a couple years ago,” Pares told CBS2’s Tara Jakeway.
Gearrets agrees. Recently, he’s seen an uptick in local instances just like these.
“It’s becoming more and more frequent because of the intensity of the storm we’ve been having,” Gearrets said.
The owners of the tree companies that Jakeway spoke to suggest that all homeowners in New York and New Jersey get an evaluation on the trees on their property.