Crane snaps in half as strong winds batter Britain ahead of polling day washout

Andy Wells
Freelance Writer
The scene at Fassett Road in south London, where a crane partially collapsed on a building site (PA)

A crane partially collapsed on Tuesday as strong winds lashed much of the country.

Pictures from a building site on Fassett Road, south London, show the top of the crane snapped and bent out of shape, looming over the ground below.

The incident is not thought to have caused any injuries.

It was previously thought that Tuesday would bring Storm Brendan to the shores of the UK but the Met Office said there would not be enough of an impact from winds to warrant a storm name.

The crane partially collapsed over a building site (PA)
It is not thought there were any injuries as a result of the collapse (PA)

Turbulent air from Storm Attiyah caused "mountainous seas" off the coast of Ireland on Sunday, according to the Irish Met Office, and 70mph winds have swept the UK since.

Craig Snell, a Met Office meteorologist, said the cold and blustery weather in the rest of the UK is "business as usual for this time of year".

Bad weather is expected to hang around for polling day on Thursday, with heavy rain and chilly temperatures forecast in marginal seats as voters head to the ballot box.

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Wintry spells could hit eastern parts of Scotland on Thursday, the region home to the closest seat in the country: North East Fife, where the SNP are defending a majority of just two.

Ultra-marginal constituencies in England could also see some bad conditions as wet weather moves north throughout the country.

Kensington, where Labour has a majority of 20, and Richmond Park, where the Conservatives have a majority of 45, will have wet conditions as a band of rain moves towards London throughout the morning.

Heavy rain is forecast for much of the country on Thursday as voters head to the polls (Met Office)

Mr Snell said about London: "[It will] start off cold but dry and bright, but as we go through the course of Thursday, we're going to see a band of rain moving through from the west, reaching London around lunchtime.”

Dudley North, with a Labour majority of 22, will also see periods of wet weather throughout the morning, Mr Snell said. He added: "in the afternoon, a dry spell before further rain arrives at the end of Thursday.”

However, one academic does not think bad weather has an adverse effect on turnout and results.

Bad weather is not expected to hit turnout as the country votes in the general election (PA)

Chris Hanretty, a politics professor at Royal Holloway University, found no significant statistical link between rain on the day of the EU referendum in 2016 and voter turnout.

He wrote on Twitter: "The effects of weather on turnout are small, if they exist, and the effects on vote share are tiny. Less than one fifth of 1% in an extreme case."