COLUMBUS, OH – The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) will begin removing hazardous trees from East Fork State Park starting the week of Monday, Jan. 23. No roadways will be closed during removal or collection.
Trees will be cut down and limbs removed for residents to pick up for their own use. Collection will be between the hours of 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. starting on Wednesday, Feb. 1, and ending on Monday, March 27. The firewood will be available for removal from various locations in the East Fork campground, located at 2837 Old State Route 32, Batavia 45103 on the north side of the state park. There will also be various pickup locations in the day-use picnic areas on the south side of the park, located at 3294 Elklick Road, Bethel 45106.
The trees that will be removed have been affected by the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), which is an exotic invasive wood-boring insect that infests and kills native North American ash trees. The ash trees that have been impacted by the EAB infestation pose a public safety concern for park visitors and campers. The dead trees become brittle and can break easily, causing large limbs and whole trunk sections to fall, which could endanger people and property. Only dead or dying ash trees that cause a threat to campsites and other public areas will be removed.
Only hazardous trees cut by ODNR personnel and located at the designated pick-up areas may be collected and removed. This means that people may collect any fallen or downed timber (branches, twigs and logs on the ground) within the designated areas. Removal of any standing or fallen trees outside of the designated pick-up area will be prohibited. Log splitters cannot be used, but chainsaws and hand tools are permitted to further process the firewood. Vehicles must remain in the designated parking areas. No vehicles are permitted off roadways or designated parking areas.
Firewood will be available on a first-come, first-served basis, and the department makes no guarantee that the supply will be available for the full duration of the designated timeframe.