FOUR cars have been squashed by a fallen tree in the New Zealand's Auckland Domain this afternoon - prompting calls from a council arborist to close some car parks there.
Three cars were severely damaged by the oak tree when it split in half, sending 15m and 2 tonnes of trunk and branches into the parked vehicles about 1pm.
The cars have smashed windscreens and crushed roofs.
Another vehicle had some scratches and minor dents.
Only two of the four were insured.
Owner of a severely damaged red Rover, Tofik Mamedov, was shocked.
"I couldn't believe it," he said.
Mr Mamedov parks in the Domain as it is close to his work.
"Unfortunately I don't have insurance because I was going overseas in less than a month and was going to sell the car as well."
The other crushed cars were a Mazda Familia and a Honda.
Fire crews chainsawed the fallen tree into pieces to remove it from the road, and Auckland Council arborists were on scene assessing the damage.
Arboriculture and landscape advisor Simon Cook said there was internal rot in the tree, which was planted in the 1860s, but it wasn't visible externally.
"We have done a lot of work to identify risks for these trees ... and we have done work on all of the trees in terms of risks that we saw."
Trees were regularly pruned and were not sprayed or mowed around, he said.
"[The trees] are really difficult to protect and we are looking more and more at closing the car park in here."
No people were injured when the tree fell and the road, on the western side of the park, was reopened.
A fire spokesman said one crew was sent to deal with the tree and the service also notified police.
Police were at the scene talking with the car owners.
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