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10,000 trees, including giant sequoias, are a hazard and must be removed, California park officials say

As fire crews work to contain the KNP Complex Fire that has destroyed many of California’s iconic sequoia trees, it has been determined that 10,000 trees are a hazard and need to be removed.

The wildfire that was sparked by lightning has been burning since early September and is only 63% contained, according to the incident report released Monday by Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Fire crews have been trying to save majestic giant sequoias that are internationally recognized treasures and historic landmarks, according to the National Park Service.

On Friday, the park service said reports are that 10,000 trees along the Generals Highway, the main road through the park, are considered a hazard and need to be removed.

“Hazard trees — weakened by drought, disease, age, and/or fire — have a high probability to fail in part or whole and have the potential to strike people, cars, other structures, or create barriers to emergency response services,” reads the park’s incident report.

The trees are becoming a safety issue as crews battle the wildfire that has scorched more than 88,000 acres. The park service has several saw crews working along the Generals Highway to create safe travel zones for firefighters, residents and future visitors, the report says. The road will continued to be closed, according to NPS.

Officials are working to develop develop hazard tree mitigation actions.

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Source: Orange County Register

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