Firewood Pieces Along County Roads...who do they belong to?

The county maintains a lot of roads in Jackson County - over 900 miles currently.  Many of these roads have trees which are adjacent to them, especially in the foothills and forested areas around our beautiful county.  As you might imagine, as the years go by, trees grow and mature and many of them will, at times, encroach upon the road to the point where safety and maintenance are affected.  In times like these we send our trained crews, or hire contractors, to remove the hazard - sometimes by simple trimming/pruning and other times by removing the entire tree if necessary.

Buckhorn Springs Rd PictureWhen wood is cut along our county roads we do the following:

  • Chip the small stuff and haul it away.
  • If safe, leave the big stuff for firewood.

So what happens to the wood?  Who gets it?  Who does it really belong to?

In some places it is not safe to leave the wood along the roadside so we will dispose of it, but in general, the less we have to haul away the better.  When we do leave wood behind the questions above quickly come to mind - primarily focused on who now owns it.  Most of the time, the cut wood actually belongs to the property owner who fronts the road in the area the tree was cut.  Sometimes property line issues come up, but in general it is pretty clear whose property the tree was on.

But what if the tree is in the 'right-of-way'?  Because the majority of county roads are constructed on easements, it still belongs to the property owner who fronts the road.

In some cases the property owner may not want the wood for any purpose, in which case it then falls to the process of first come - first served.  However, you should ask permission before removing the wood you just happen to see lying along the roadside so you know for sure the owner does not want it.  Many times assumptions are made, and many times they are wrong, so please inquire with the owner first.

If you have any questions, feel free to give us a call - we are here to help at 541.774.8184.