Tourist critically injured by falling tree limb

A tourist was seriously injured when a large branch from a diseased tree fell on her in Washington Square Park.

The woman, visiting from Virginia, was sitting on a bench with her teenage son when the limb came crashing down.

She was rushed to Bellevue Hospital after the accident with a fractured skull and spine.

The Parks Department says the 35" thick London Plane tree was last pruned in August 2017 after being inspected a month earlier.

"Our preliminary inspection indicates that the tree shows signs of having Massaria, a fungus, which may have caused the limb to fail," Crystal Howard from the Parks Department said.  "We will conduct further inspections of the tree, and surrounding trees, and will address accordingly."
Massaria is most often found in London plane trees. Stress, usually due to lack of water availability, is tied to incidences of the disease.