St Jude's Day Storm: High winds bring down crane on cabinet office in Westminster

A Cabinet Office spokeswoman said its staff have all been evacuated

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The Independent Online

A crane has collapsed on the cabinet office in Westminster after the St Jude's Day Storm battered the capital with high winds and driving rain.

A Cabinet Office spokeswoman said its staff have all been evacuated while the extent of the damage caused by the crane is assessed and that none were injured in the incident, which happened at around 6.50am.

"As is the case with many other buildings in storm-affected areas, and despite the necessary preparations, there has been some damage to the Cabinet Office building," she said.

"A crane at the back of the Cabinet Office was dislodged by the storm, and is currently resting on the roof. We are assessing the damage, and the building has been evacuated while we do so.

"Many staff can log on and work flexibly from the Treasury building or from other locations and we are exploring other temporary options.

"We are working hard to ensure the safety of our staff and minimum disruption to operations."

The incident came as a weather system from the Atlantic hammered Britain with high winds. The highest recorded wind speed was on the Isle Of Man, which saw a gust of 99mph.

Elsewhere 220,000 people were left without power after electricity lines came down across the south of England.

Click here or on 'view gallery' to see readers' images of the storm