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Last Updated: Wednesday, 9 January 2008, 14:06 GMT
High winds cause major problems
Roof crushes car
Roofing fell from the halls of residence at about 0230 GMT
Strong winds have been causing problems across Tayside and central Scotland, with power cuts, travel disruption and structural damage.

The Tay Road Bridge was closed until mid-afternoon and police are advising motorists to stay away from the Kincardine Bridge due to tailbacks.

About 2,000 homes in Tayside had their electricity supplies disrupted, with parts of Falkirk also affected.

Part of the roof of a Dundee University halls of residence also blew off.

In total, 12 students had to be moved to another part of the Seabraes building, which only opened in February last year.

The roofing fell onto the car park below at about 0230 GMT, severely damaging a number of vehicles and a lamp post.

'Insurance claim'

Janitor Jim Kelly said: "When I got round and I saw this it was unbelievable, but nobody was hurt and that's the main thing.

"We're lucky all the students aren't back yet, it's not nearly as busy as usual.

"Usually that car park is jammed solid, it could've been a lot worse."

Student Alex Baillie, 25, had his car crushed by the roof.

He told the BBC Scotland website: "I'd been for a run and I came back down the stairs and I saw some people at the doors and I went 'Okay, what's happening here?'

"So I came down and thought, 'Ah, something's hit my car.' What else can you do?

"I think I'll make a very hefty insurance claim."

There have also been power cuts in the Tayside area.

Scottish and Southern Energy said an area south of Perth, including Lochearnhead, Gleneagles and Glendevon, had been particularly affected.

A spokeswoman said at the height of the problems about 2,000 homes were without power, but that has since fallen to about 1,000.

Fallen Tree (picture courtesy of John Summers)
This old tree blew over in the square in central Stirling

Tayside Police said they were working to clear fallen trees across many routes.

The force has also had reports of problems caused by Christmas street decorations, shop signs, roof slates, a chimney pot and fencing.

In separate incidents, three trampolines were also reported to have sailed from their usual garden moorings to be found on roadways in Perthshire and Angus. A fourth one was reported missing.

Central Scotland Police said numerous roads were blocked or partially blocked and advised motorists to stay away from Stirling city centre.

In Falkirk town centre, Bank Street was closed due to the threat of falling masonry.

In Stirling, a 42-year-old man from Arbroath was taken to hospital after his lorry blew over on the M9 at Pirnhall.

Pc Andrew Starkie, of the Road Policing Unit, said: "Motorists should expect long delays as the Forth Bridge has been closed.

"There is currently a five-mile tailback from the Kincardine Bridge and there is a two-mile tailback on the M9 in this area."

Pc Starkie added: "Motorists shouldn't come off the M9 at Stirling but should continue onto the A9 north."

And he urged those travelling to drive according to the road conditions and to leave plenty of time for their journey.



VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
Scenes of damage caused by the storms



SEE ALSO
Driver survives shoreline crash
09 Jan 08 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
In Pictures: Scotland's storms
09 Jan 08 |  In Pictures
Wind hits power and shuts bridges
09 Jan 08 |  Scotland
Chaos as Forth Road Bridge closes
09 Jan 08 |  Edinburgh, East and Fife

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