Two cars in Waterlooville crushed after tree topples in strong winds

CRASH Main picture, a crushed Citroen and inset, Tim Banting with his Volkswagen.  Inset picture: Paul Jacobs (121481-1)
CRASH Main picture, a crushed Citroen and inset, Tim Banting with his Volkswagen. Inset picture: Paul Jacobs (121481-1)
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CAR owner Tim Banting was left stunned after a tree fell down and crushed his car.

Mr Banting was visiting Denmead Health Centre, in Hambledon Road, Waterlooville, when a huge gust of wind toppled the tree.

CRASH Tim Banting with his Volkswagen.  Picture: Paul Jacobs (121481-1)

CRASH Tim Banting with his Volkswagen. Picture: Paul Jacobs (121481-1)

It landed in the health centre car park on top of two cars. One – a green Volkswagen estate – belongs to Mr Banting.

The 62-year-old of Badger Brow, Waterlooville, said: ‘I was waiting to get my prescription when a nurse came running in and said a tree had fallen on my car.

‘I had my car in the car park and the tree had come down on it.

‘I think it’s going to be a write-off.

‘Luckily I wasn’t inside it and no one else was hurt.

‘I didn’t even hear a noise. It was only until the nurse said anything that I knew.’

The incident happened around midday yesterday, as the south coast continues to be battered by bad weather.

It is thought the bark may have been weakened earlier in the month after being struck by lightning.

Mr Banting, a carpenter, added: ‘I’ve heard the tree was condemned because it had been struck by lightning a couple of weeks ago.

‘Maybe that had made it weaker.

‘But there were no signs saying you couldn’t park there.’

Primary care trust cluster Ship, which covers Hampshire, is in charge of clearing the area.

Janet Kearney, head of capital planning and strategic development for Ship, said: ‘Firstly, while it’s a shock for the owners of the two vehicles, I’m very pleased to hear that no-one has been injured as a result of the high winds blowing down this tree.

‘Staff from our estates team attended after being told of the incident, and our health and safety advisor has been informed.

‘We will co-operate fully with the insurance companies of the two affected drivers, in order to expedite matters as swiftly as possible for them.’

The trust has a grounds and gardens contractor, which covers all of the community properties in Hampshire and is in charge of a clean-up.